Untimely walks, wild pitches, and errors plagued the Kansas City Monarchs (39-22) as they weren’t able to fly with Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks, losing 4-2 on the road on Saturday night. Jon Harris provided a strong start on the mound for Kansas City, with five innings pitched, allowing only three hits and two runs on the day. The RedHawks bullpen ultimately shut down the Monarchs offense, allowing only five hits and two runs for the game.
RBIs and hits proved to be scarce throughout Saturday night; through five innings, Kansas City and Fargo-Moorhead combined for only six hits, four runs and one RBI. In the first inning, the Monarchs stole a run via heads up baserunning from David Thompson. Following two strikeouts from RedHawk starter Tanner Riley, Thompson drew a walk and stole second and third base. Thompson eventually scored from third after a wild pitch. The Monarchs threatened again with two outs but were not able to capitalize with runners on second and third base. Jon Harris received the start for Kansas City and retired the RedHawks in order, picking up his first strikeout of the night.
Both offenses stayed quiet in the early innings, as the RedHawks brought in reliever, Brady Stover, to pitch in the second. Stover stifled the Monarchs’ offense in the second, third, and fourth innings. Stover recorded four strikeouts, allowed two hits, and one run in four innings of work. Jon Harris matched Stover’s efforts on the mound with two hitless and scoreless innings in the second and third, as he retired five batters in a row between the two frames. In the fourth inning, the RedHawks made the most of a two-out single from Ben Livorsi. Harris walked John Silviano early in the fourth, allowing him to reach third base on Livorsi’s single. With runners at first and third base, Sam Dexter put the RedHawks on the board with an RBI single. On Dexter’s single, Livorsi reached third base. With Livorsi on third base, Nick Novak stepped up to the plate, looking to break the tie. Novak struck out on a dropped third strike but reached first and Livorsi scored, giving the RedHawks a 2-1 lead after four innings.
In the fifth inning, the Monarchs battled back, starting with Darnell Sweeney who reached second base on a fielder’s choice and an error by the shortstop Sam Dexter. With Sweeney on second base with two outs, Kevin Santa’s timely infield single helped Sweeney advance to third base. With David Thompson at the plate, an untimely wild pitch from Stover allowed speedy Darnell Sweeney to tie the game up, 2-2. Jon Harris settled back in on the mound for Kansas City, retiring Fargo-Moorhead in order behind strong defensive play from Casey Gillaspie.
Joe Jones replaced Stover on the mound for the RedHawks, holding the Monarchs scoreless via a key inning ending 4-6-3 double play. Harris remained on the mound for Kansas City to start the bottom of the sixth inning before surrendering a leadoff single to SIlviano. With Silviano on first, Kansas City called upon Brandon Koch to replace Harris on the mound. Brandon Koch struck out three in the inning, allowing only one hit and no runs.
Seven pitches in the top of the seventh inning was all that it took for Jones to retire the bottom half of the Monarchs lineup in order, holding the score all even at 2-2. Similar to the sixth, Koch faced the first batter but was replaced after surrendering a hit-by-pitch at-bat to the leadoff RedHawk, Christian Correa. Jordan Martinson entered for Koch on the mound, securing a fielder’s choice to start his outing, and striking out the next batter he faced to get two outs in the inning. Evan Alexander, who reached first on the fielder’s choice, stole second base, eliminating the force out at second base. David Thompson fielded a ground ball on a high hop off the turf at third base but was unable to make a clean throw to first, allowing Alexander to score. The RedHawks led 3-2 heading into the eighth inning.
In the eight inning, the Monarchs top of the order went down in order, with Joe Jones pitching one more impactful inning for Fargo-Moorhead from the bullpen. In the bottom of the eighth, the RedHawks added a much needed insurance run off of reliever Jordan Martinson before Kansas City called upon Jacob Lindgren to hold the score at 4-2. Alex DuBord entered in the ninth to attempt to secure the save for the RedHawks. Down to their final three outs in the ninth inning, the Monarchs managed a two-out double from Chad De La Guerra. With the tying run at the plate, J.C. Escarra struck out looking to end the game, giving DuBord his seventeenth save of the season.
The Monarchs are all set to take on the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks in the final game of the three-game series tomorrow night at Newman Outdoor Field with the first pitch at 1:00 p.m. The game can be heard on the Monarchs Broadcast Network with the pre-game beginning at 12:30 p.m. and the video stream airing on aabaseball.tv.
Tickets to all Monarchs games can be purchased by calling 913-328-5618 or by visiting monarchsbaseball.com. For additional information or interview requests, members of the media may contact the Monarchs Media Relations Department at (817) 739-3693. Stay tuned to monarchsbaseball.com. and the Monarchs Facebook and Twitter pages for updates throughout the season.
WP: Jones (3-1)
LP: Koch (2-2)
S: DuBord (17)
By: CALEB GRIZZLE