LINCOLN, – The Sioux City Explorers scored three runs in the ninth inning to break a 4-all tie and opened the 2018 season with a 7-4 win over the Lincoln Saltdogs in an American Association baseball game here Thursday.
With one out and a runner on second base, Michael Lang tripled to score Daniel Jackson giving the X’s a 5-4 lead, then scored on Jay Austin's single. Three batters later, Jay Baum singled to score Nate Samson for a 7-4 lead.
Eric Karch pitched 1.1 innings of relief and allowed two hits, two runs and struck out three batters to earn the win. Geoff Broussard pitched the ninth inning allowing one walk and striking out one to earn the save.
Trailing 1-0 in the top of the second, Dylan Kelly hit a two-run single with two outs to score both Nate Samson and Nelson Ward giving the X’s a 2-1 lead.
With the game tied at 2-all in the top of the fourth, Baum hit a two-run homer to give the X’s a 4-2 lead.
After three scoreless innings, Lincoln’s Angel Reyes hit a two-run homer to tie the game at 4-all in the bottom of the eighth.
Baum went 3-for-4 from the plate for Sioux City. Baum was in the Seattle Mariners farm system until he was released in last May.
Ward went 2-for-4 with a double and a triple for Sioux City. Ward has recently played in the farm system for both Mariners and the San Diego Padres.
Luis Durango went 2-for-4 for Sioux City and Samson went 2-for-5.
Nathaniel Maggio went 2-for-5 with an RBI double for Lincoln (0-1).
The X’s play Lincoln again on Friday in the second game of the four-game series. It's part of a seven-game road stretch for Manager Steve Montgomery's squad before they return home on May 25 for a seven-game home stand.
Scott Frost, the new head coach of the University of Nebraska football team, threw the ceremonial first pitch.