ST. PAUL, MN (May 25, 2023) - The St. Paul Saints entered play on Thursday night hitting a robust .356 with the bases loaded, top 15 in all of Minor League Baseball. After squandering a 4-0 lead, Andrew Stevenson came up with the biggest hit of the night with the
_ST. PAUL, MN _*(May 25, 2023) - *The St. Paul Saints entered play on Thursday night hitting a robust .356 with the bases loaded, top 15 in all of Minor League Baseball. After squandering a 4-0 lead, Andrew Stevenson came up with the biggest hit of the night with the bases loaded in the eighth inning as the Saints came from behind for an 8-6 victory at CHS Field in front of 7,218. The win improves the Saints record to 25-21.
With the Saints down 6-4 in the eighth Tyler White led off with a double to right-center. With one out, Hernán Pérez walked and that was followed by a single to left from Ryan LaMarre to load the bases. With two outs Stevenson roped a bases clearing triple to the gap in right-center. The relay throw to third went into foul territory and Stevenson scampered home to score, giving the Saints a two-run lead. Stevenson finished the night 2-4 with a double, triple, three RBI, and two runs scored.
Things got hairy in the ninth as the Storm Chasers loaded the bases with one out. Greyson Jenista walked, Dairon Blanco singled to center, and Brewer Hicklen walked. Saints reliever Patrick Murphy settled down and got a shallow fly out to right field off the bat of Angelo Castellano before striking out Tucker Bradley to end the game.
The Saints struck first in the first as Stevenson led off with a double to left that extended his hitting streak to a career-tying high 13 games. With two outs Chris Williams knocked him home with a single to center giving the Saints a 1-0 lead.
In the fifth, the Saints added to their lead courtesy of two errors on one play. With one out Stevenson walked. With two outs, Mark Contreras hit a ground ball that glanced off the glove of the first baseman Jenista and into right field for an error as Stevenson came into score, increasing the lead to 2-0. The throw home skipped by the catcher Logan Porter as Contreras took second on the throwing error. That proved costly because Williams banged an RBI single into left scoring Contreras giving the Saints a 3-0 lead.
Andrew Bechtold extended the Saints lead to 4-0 with a solo homer to left in the sixth, his fourth of the season.
Saints starter Aaron Sanchez was superb despite having traffic on the base paths in the second through sixth innings. He left seven men stranded over those five innings and went 6.0 shutout innings allowing five hits while walking one and striking out two.
The Saints bullpen had allowed just nine runs in the last 40.0 innings, a Triple-A best 2.03 ERA over the last eight games. The bullpen finally showed it was human as the Storm Chasers tied the game in the top of the seventh with one mighty swing of the bat. Cody Laweryson allowed a leadoff single to Castellano that was followed by an RBI double from Bradley cutting the Saints lead to 4-1. After a walk to Samad Taylor, Nick Loftin tied it with a three-run homer to left, his eighth of the season.
One inning later the Storm Chasers grabbed their first lead of the game against Ronny Henriquez. The first three hitters reached on a single and two walks to load the bases. With one out Taylor dropped a two-run single into left-center giving the Storm Chasers a 6-4 lead. For the second consecutive night, however, the Saints lost a big lead, but managed to score late and win.
The same two teams meet in game four of a six-game series at CHS Field at 7:07 p.m. The Saints are TBA and the Storm Chasers send LHP Drew Parrish (1-2, 5.09) to the mound. The game can be seen on the Saints Broadcast Network, cable access channels in and around the Twin Cities area, the Bally Live app (free), and MiLB.TV (subscription), and heard on KFAN Plus, 96.7 FM.