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X's Bats Silenced in Sioux Falls

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Sioux Falls, SD-For a second consecutive night, Sioux Falls pitching kept Sioux City’s offense relatively quiet in a 4-1 Canaries victory at the Birdcage.

 

The Canaries (2-0) scored first again, producing a run in each of the first two innings. Chris Valencia led off the bottom of the first with a triple to right. He would score on a sacrifice fly to center by Carlos Mendez. Sioux Falls made it 2-0 in the second on a one-out, solo home run to right by Shelby Ford. It was the third homer in the first two games for the Canaries.

 

Sioux Falls plated two more runs in the fifth for a 4-0 lead. Steve Tinoco led off with an infield single. With one out, Valencia reached on a single to center but was forced out on a fielder’s choice by Mendez. The next batter, Brandon Jones, singled to left and drove in Tinoco. Mendez scored the fourth Sioux Falls run on a batted ball to short from Chase Burch that resulted in an X’s error.

 

The lone Sioux City (0-2) run came across in the sixth inning. Luke Murton led off with a walk. After a strikeout and a passed ball, Nate Samson reached on a fielder’s choice. Todd Jennings then walked and Michael Lang drove in Samson with a two-out double up the right field line. Rene Tosoni followed Lang’s extra base hit with a walk. Down 4-1 with two outs and the bases loaded, Andres Perez popped out to the catcher in foul ground behind home plate to end the rest of the threat.

 

Sioux Falls right-hander John Brebbia earned the win. Brebbia (1-0) pitched five innings, gave up four hits, and did not allow a run. He struck out eight and walked three. X’s starter Geoff Broussard suffered the loss. Broussard (0-1) worked five innings and allowed four runs (three earned) on seven hits with five strikeouts and no walks. Canaries closer Alan DeRatt pitched the ninth and yielded a base hit before picking up his second save in as many nights to open the new season. Both Brebbia and Broussard were making their first professional starts after serving as relievers in their young minor league careers.

 

The Explorers left a total of 14 runners stranded, including nine left on from the second inning through the sixth. In the first two games, the X’s have left 18 runners on base.

 

The series with the Canaries now shifts to Sioux City at Lewis & Clark Park Saturday night. It’s the X’s home opener with first pitch set for 7:05. Fans will receive a free magnet schedule with a fireworks show following the game. The series will then wrap up back in Sioux Falls with game four Sunday afternoon. For ticket information, call 712-277-WINS or visit the Explorers website at www.xsbaseball.com.