Canaries Lose 2-1 Pitchers Duel to Amarillo
By Aaron Rosenberg
SIOUX FALLS, SD - Kyle Ruwe gave the Canaries the start they were hoping for, but ultimately it wasn't enough as they fell 2-1 to the Amarillo Sox Wednesday afternoon. The righthander threw 6.2 innings, allowing just one run on seven hits while striking out one and issuing just one walk. 4,178 fans packed the Birdcage on Discovery Learning Center Day Care Day and enjoyed the pitchers duel as the skies cooperated and the rain stayed away.
Scoreless through four innings, the Canaries struck first in the bottom of the 5th. Chris Valencia led the inning off with a single and and was driven in on Stephen Branca's two-out base hit. However, the Canaries would muster only four total hits on the day and would leave Shelby Ford stranded at second base in the 9th. The Canaries are now 3-8 in one-run games.
Joe Rogers was impressive in his season debut for Amarillo, but did not factor in the decision. The lefty, a former Detroit Tigers farmhand, allowed just one run in his 6.1 innings of work on just three hits. Rogers struck out four and walked two Canaries. After Carlos Mendez singled with one out in the 7th, Rogers gave way to Kellen Moen who retired all five hitters he faced in the 7th and 8th innings. Moen picked up the win, improving to 3-1 on the season. Erik Draxton worked around a leadoff single in the 9th to pick up his 4th save.
Amarillo tied the game at 1 in the 7th when Kyle Nichols, who led the inning off with a double, came around to score on Jason Martin's two-out double. That chased Ruwe, who was relieved by John Brebbia. Brebbia promptly Omar Luna and stranded runners at 2nd and 3rd. Erick Gonzalez worked a scoreless 8th, but pitched himself into trouble in the 9th. Kyle Bellows drew a leadoff walk and moved to 3rd base on Kevin Mahoney's single. A wild pitch from Gonzalez allowed Bellows to score and Gonzalez suffered the loss, dropping to 0-2.
The rubber game of the series will be Thursday night at the Birdcage. First pitch is at 7:05 PM and fans are encouraged to come to the ballpark early and enjoy pregame festivities starting at 5:30. Beers are just $1 until first pitch and will be $2.50 throughout the game. Tickets are available at the box office, by calling 605-336-6060 or via TicketMaster.