The Sioux Falls Canaries continued their hot play at the Birdcage as they used a complete game from starting pitcher Kyle Ruwe (3-4) to go with five-run third inning from the bats to top the St. Paul Saints 7-3 Saturday evening. Ruwe allowed two earned runs through nine full innings for the Canaries (16-25), who have now won three straight games in their friendly confines and four of their last five at the park.
“We got off to a terrible start and it’s tough to overcome that,” said Ruwe. “It’s just a matter of whether we score runs or not and it looks like we’re starting to score runs now.”
A.J. Kirby-Jones and Chris Duffy provided the offense for Sioux Falls, driving in two runs apiece. The run support complemented an astounding performance by a Canaries defense that pulled off an American Association record-tying five double plays for Ruwe on the night.
“It’s always nice to make a good pitch and get a ground ball,” said Ruwe. “There’s always luck involved, but it feels good to get two outs with one pitch.”
Fans witnessed a scoreless game until the top of the third, when a double just inside the right field line from Sam Maus scored a run on Canaries starting pitcher Kyle Ruwe to make it 1-0. A barrage of singles from the home team the very next half-inning provided a quick response for the Canaries, starting a with RBI knock-in from right fielder Steve Tinoco. Four runs later Sioux Falls would have the 5-1 lead Ruwe and the team would need to take the second game of the three-game series. A two-run blast by A.J. Kirby-Jones added the icing on the cake and made it 7-2 in the bottom of the seventh.
The Saints chipped in one more run in the top of the eight, but it’d be too late for the road team as the game would end on a fitting double play in the ninth inning. Ruwe finished his strong performance having thrown 127 pitches, 87 of those for strikes.
“I actually feel like I get stronger as the game goes,” said Ruwe. “It’s just a matter of whether they’re hitting me or not.”
The Canaries will wrap up their three-game series with the Saints tomorrow afternoon with a tilt at 4:05 pm. It will be Teacher’s Day at the Birdcage, with $5 tickets for teachers and their families (up to 4 people).
Courtesy: Tony Cola, Canaries