Avera

Fast start has Canaries atop the south division

Sports

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) – Nearly a quarter of the way through the American Association season, the Canaries find themselves atop the south division standings.

Canaries manager Mike Meyer says the formula for success is winning home series and splitting on the road.  Following a 13-game road trip to start the season, Sioux Falls won seven-of-nine games during its first homestand of the season.

“To go 6-7, to keep us in the race a little bit early was big for us because we’ve had such bad starts the last couple seasons. Then to get home, and in the ballpark where we built this roster to play in this ballpark 50 times, and to get off to a good start at home has been fun,” Canaries Manager Mike Meyer said.

The team’s success has been fueled by its offense. The Birds lead the league in batting average, and rank second in both runs scored and on-base percentage, which is a credit to their approach.

“Taking their walks, hitting the ball the other way, hitting behind runners, moving runners, just having really good six or seven pitch at-bats, and really leaning on the opposing team’s pitching staffs,” Meyer said. 

Sioux Falls’ pitching staff own the fourth worst team ERA in the league, which they feel can be addressed by shoring up the bullpen, and keeping arms fresh.

“See what we can get out of some of the younger guys like Heldman, and Seyler, and Jaunich, and Ogren. See what they can do and what situation they’re best suited for,” Meyer said. 

“If you can get five to seven innings every night, your bullpen is going to be feeling good every single night, and you’re going to get better success out of those guys,” Starting Pitcher Alex Boshers said. 

The Canaries understand it’s still early, but for a team that finished 20 games below .500 last season, they’re excited about a fast start.

“It puts us in a good position moving forward. Everybody is starting to take notice now,” Boshers said. 

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