SIOUX CITY EXPLORERS PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 24, 2023
By: Dan Vaughan Jr. and Austin Thomas
CANARIES HOLD OFF X’S IN EXTRAS
LATE CHANCES DOOM SIOUX CITY
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Earlier this season, late inning heroics have been good to the Sioux City Explorers (9-3), but it was the Sioux Falls Canaries (5-8) that pulled off the late inning magic with a bases loaded walk-off winner on Wednesday night by a score of 3-2.
After the Explorers could not score in the top of the 10th, the Canaries started with the “zombie” runner Tyler Ryan at second with tie breaker rule in play, facing Sioux City closer Sean Rackoski (3-1). A sacrifice bunt by Jabari Henry moved the Ryan to third, forcing the X’s to intentionally walk Darnell Sweeney and Wyatt Ulrich to load the bases. Wellington Dotel hit a ball to third that Matt Lloyd charged but could not field cleanly with the infield drawn in to score Ryan, ending the game.
Sioux City would have a chance in both the ninth and tenth innings. In the ninth, Eury Perez hit a double off the wall to lead off the inning, but he was left at third as Sioux City went in order behind him off closer Charlie Hasty. In the top of the tenth, Chase Harris would start at second, facing Bret Barnett (1-0). He would retire Vincent Fernandez with a strikeout but walk Miguel Sierra to put two on with one out. Matt Lloyd worked a full count and would hit a ball sharply to second, but the Canaries could not turn two on the play. Harris would race around third and try to catch the Canaries napping, but first baseman Trevor Achenbach threw home to Ryan to retire Harris at the plate for the third out of the inning.
The X’s started the game off by loading the bases with one out in what seemed to be a repeat performance of their 17-7 victory the night prior, but Sioux Falls starter Neil Lang found his stride, getting out of the jam unscathed. The Canaries followed up by loading the bases themselves, but they also failed to score in the first.
Lang got the first two out quickly in the second inning, but he walked Kyle Kasser before allowing an RBI double from Jack Kelly to give the X’s the lead. Trevor Achenbach of the Canaries reached second after stealing the bag but didn’t get any further. The X’s were held in check by Lang once again in the third, but it was a Dotel RBI single off Sioux City starter Mitchell Verburg that tied the game up.
Neither team saw a runner past first base in the fourth inning, but Verburg went down with an injury after getting the third out and was pulled following the inning. Both teams went down one-two-three in the fifth inning as Francys Peguero relieved the injured Verburg. Lang threw another perfect inning in the sixth while Peguero allowed just a single.
Lang was relieved by Jerryell Rivera to start the seventh, and he followed in his footsteps with his own perfect inning. With the game still tied 1-1, a Jabari Henry single sent home Osvaldo Martinez for the Canaries to take the 2-1 lead. The X’s responded with a two-out rally in the eighth as Jake Sanford smacked a pinch-hit RBI single to score Matt Lloyd.
The loss was the first extra-inning loss this season for Sioux City. It also was the first time they lost when tied after seven innings this season. They had previously been 4-0 in late inning situations.
The Explorers will be off on Thursday May 25 but will return home Friday May 26 to host the Lincoln Saltdogs in the first of a three-game series. Tickets for the season can be purchased online at XSBaseball.com, in person at the Lewis and Clark Park Box Office or by calling 712-277-WINS. You can catch all the X’s action on aabaseball.tv and on radio at KSCJ 94.9 FM and 1360 AM.