‘Cats squander early lead for second straight night, lose sixth straight game in 3-2 loss

‘Cats squander early lead for second straight night, lose sixth straight game in 3-2 loss
By: Gary Southshore RailCats Last Updated: July 26, 2019

The Gary SouthShore RailCats were swept for the second straight series after losing 3-2 to the Sioux City Explorers at Mercy Field at Lewis and Clark in the final matchup of the year between the two clubs. Following Friday night’s loss, Gary is a season-worst 16 games below .500 and have dropped a season-high-tying six straight games and 10 of their last 12 contests.

Scoreless through five, Gary (24-40) took their second and final lead of the series with a run in the sixth. MJ Rookard doubled to right to begin the inning before John Price Jr. advanced him to third with a groundout to Sioux City starter Eric Karch. Behind 0-2 in the count, Tom Walraven punched an RBI single past a drawn-in infield to center field for the first run of the evening. 4

Just like last night, Sioux City (35-29) quickly countered with three runs in the bottom of the sixth to take the lead for good. Justin Felix walked to begin the inning before Michael Lang yanked a double down the third base line with one out. Nate Samson followed Lang with a two-run triple to left on a ball Ray Jones lost in the lights. Former RailCat Jose Sermo then made it 3-1 with an RBI single to shallow center.

The ‘Cats added the game’s final in the eighth, trimming the Explorers lead to 3-2. Alex Crosby singled to right to begin the inning before Rookard recorded the second of his two doubles. John Price Jr. followed Rookard with a sacrifice fly, bringing home Crosby from third and moving Rookard up to third. Walraven and Colin Willis loaded the bases with back-to-back walks but Wilfredo Gimenez lined into a double play to end the inning with the tying-run on third and the go-ahead run on second.

Trevor Lubking (5-7) was charged with his season-high fourth straight loss despite recording his second straight and team-leading ninth quality start. The left-handed went six innings, allowing three runs on five and two walks while striking out four.

Karch (3-4) recorded his third straight win after allowing just one run over seven innings. The right-hander yielded six hits and a walk while striking out three. Matt Gercken recorded his second hold of the series despite allowing a run in the top of the eighth while Matt Pobereyko (18) secured the win with his second save of the series.

Gary continues their six-game road trip on Saturday night at 6:05 p.m. against the Milwaukee Milkmen at Routine Field. RailCats’ right-hander Justin Sinibaldi (3-4, 3.00) opposes Milkmen right-hander Jordan Kraus (4-1, 2.08) in the opening game of the series.

Gary returns home to U.S. Steel Yard on Tuesday for a nine-game, 10-day homestand vs. the Winnipeg Goldeyes at 7:10 p.m. Tuesday’s game is Crown Point Community Library Night and features a food drive, supporting Food Bank of Northwest Indiana. Tuesday’s game is also another Community HealthNet Health Centers Tuesday and Taco Tuesday. Visit any Northwest Indiana CHN for complimentary tickets to Tuesday’s game and enjoy our beef tacos and margaritas for $2 and $5, respectively.

Ticket packages for the 2019 Gary SouthShore RailCats season are available online at railcatsbaseball.com and can also be purchased by calling the RailCats ticket line at (219) 882-BALL. The RailCats box office is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.