The St. Paul Saints and Gary Southshore RailCats were ready to open their American Association playoff series on Tuesday night at CHS Field, but the forecast called for persistent showers all night, and the game was subsequently postponed. It was played Wednesday night where the Saints opened the best-of-five series with a 4-0 win over the RailCats.
Chris Nunn got the start for the Saints and pitched eight strong innings, not allowing a hit until Andy DeJesus doubled to center field to start the fourth inning. DeJesus moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Tillman Pugh, but a strikeout and a fly out ended the inning with no runs on the board.
By that time the Saints had already struck for three runs, including two in the bottom of the first as Burt Reynolds ripped a two-run home run into the RailCats bullpen in left field.
Saint Paul scored one run in the second on a one-out double from Justin O’Conner. He advanced to third on a groundout from Dan Motl and subsequently scored on a wild pitch. Joey Wong then doubled, and Max Murphy drew a walk to put two runners on, but Kyle Barrett flew out to right field to end the inning.
The Saints picked up its fourth and final run in the sixth inning via a solo home run off the bat of Brady Shoemaker. Thankfully for the Saints that insurance run was not needed, as Beck Wheeler came into the game to pitch the ninth, dispatching all three RailCats he faced to end the game and put the Saints up 1-0 in the series.
Game 2 will take place on Thursday night at CHS Field. The Saints will send RHP Eddie Medina to the mound. He will be opposed by LHP Lars Liguori. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.
After the game, the series will move to Gary for Game 3, as well as the fourth and fifth games if they end up being needed. Originally the teams had Thursday as a travel day, but it was removed after the rainout.