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Birds Fall Short In Wacky Game At Cleburne
PHOTO: Erin Bormett / Sioux Falls Canaries
They say every time you come to the ballpark, you see something you've never seen before. That was certainly true for the fans at the Depot on Saturday.
The Sioux Falls Canaries dropped the third game of their season-opening series with the Cleburne Railroaders 4-1 in a game that featured a triple play and a bases-loaded two-out bunt, among other oddities.
Sioux Falls jumped out to an early lead in the first inning when Clint Coulter brought Mitch Glasser in with an RBI single.
Cleburne would respond quickly in the bottom half, plating two runs via RBI singles from Levi Scott and Hunter Clanin.
Canaries starter Keaton Steele rebounded after the rough first inning, throwing five scoreless frames from the second inning on. He allowed two runs on three hits in six innings of work, with two walks and two strikeouts.
The Canaries had several chances to tie the score, but were thwarted. The most notable came in the fourth inning, when a single from Alay Lago and a walk from Mike Hart put two on with no one out. They'd move to second and third on a wild pitch from Cleburne starter Nefi Ogando.
Jordan Ebert, the next batter, flied out to left field. Hart, the runner at second, misread the ball and hustled to third base. Hart was doubled off at second as Lago, the runner at third, appeared to tag up and score.
But the umpires ruled Lago left third base early, negating a run and giving Cleburne a triple play.
Sioux Falls would bring the tying run into scoring position in the fifth and eighth innings, but failed to score.
The Birds loaded the bases in the eighth inning, still trailing 2-1. Andrew Ely came to the plate with two out, and laid down a two-strike bunt that went foul to end the inning. Ely had been dealing with oblique tightness that made it difficult for him to swing the bat.
Cleburne added two insurance runs in the ninth, bringing the final score to 4-1.
The Canaries and Railroaders finish their season-opening four-game series Sunday at 6 p.m. Spencer Herrmann will start for Sioux Falls. Michael Gunn will pitch for Cleburne. Fans can tune in on Sioux Falls Sports Radio 98.1 FM and AM 1230 KWSN.