Canaries Drop Series Opener On Friday Night

Posted: 6/19/2015


SIOUX FALLS, SD—The Sioux Falls Canaries (14-15) returned to Sioux Falls Stadium on Friday night, opening up a three-game series against the red-hot Sioux City Explorers (21-6).  The Birds’ lead 1-0 early, but a 5th inning grand-slam spoiled the night, with the Birds’ falling to the Explorers by the final score of 6-1. 

Canaries starting pitcher Shawn Blackwell (1-4, 2.29 ERA) battled through 5 2/3 innings, allowing five runs, four un-earned run, on seven hits.  The right-hander worked his way out of a bases-loaded situation in the 2nd inning, leaving all three runs stranded on base.  Blackwell didn’t fare as well in a similar situation in the top of the 5th, walking Rene Tosoni to load the bases before giving up a grand-slam to Sioux City’s clean-up hitter, Brock Kjelgard (6).     

Tommy Mendonca also hit a solo-homer for the Explorers in the top of the 6th inning, finishing his night 2-for-4 at the plate. 

Richard Stock provided the only run of the night for the Canaries, hitting a one-out solo homerun over the left-field wall in the bottom of the 4th inning.  It was Stock’s team leading, 4th homer of the season, and his 20th RBI of the year.  Stock continues to pace the Canaries offense in 2015, leading the team in hits (34), doubles (9), homeruns (4), and RBI’s (20). 

Sioux City starting pitcher John Straka (3-1, 3.11 ERA) picked up the win after striking out eight batters , and allowing just one run on five hits over seven innings. 

Canaries batters struck out 10 times on Friday night, and have now recorded 42 strikeouts in the last four games combined. 

The Birds’ will try to snap their two-game skid on Saturday night as they continue their weekend series against their I-29 rivals.  LHP Joe Bircher (2-1, 2.45 ERA) will make his sixth start of the season.  

The Mobil Oil Super Tour makes a stop at Sioux Falls Stadium on Saturday night, with their mascot, Mobil Sam making an appearance. There will be many prizes and promotions that will be given away throughout the course of the game. Fans can also enjoy bottled Coca-Cola products for only $2 from 5-6 PM. 

Get your tickets to any of the Canaries home games this season by contacting the Canaries Ticket Office at (605) 336-6060 or visit No matter your schedule, the Canaries have a ticket package for you. Ask a Canaries representative about the weekender, perch packs or E-Z Game Tickets.