ST. PAUL, Minn. | Despite hitting eighth in the lineup, Dre Gleason went 4-for-5 from the plate with a double and drove in four runs as the Sioux City Explorers defeated the St. Paul Saints 9-7 at CHS Field here Thursday.
Gleason entered the game 12-for-46 on the season with a batting average of .260, but after the game was over his average rocketed to .314.
The X’s (31-30) scored three runs to open the game. With bases loaded, LeVon Washington hit a one-out single to score both Tony Campana and Jayce Ray. Two batters later, Michael Lang hit a two-out single to score Tyler Ogle.
After scoring on run in the bottom of the second, the Saints (35-28) trimmed the X’s lead to 3-2 in the fourth inning on a leadoff homer from Anthony Gallas.
Sioux City scored three more runs in the fifth inning. Joe Bennie hit a leadoff homer over the wall in center field to extend the X’s lead to 4-2. After a pair of two-out walks and an infield single, Dre Gleason hit a 3-2 pitch into center field for a single that scored Washington and Joel Davis giving Sioux City a 6-2 lead.
The Saints responded with three runs of their own in the bottom half of the fifth. With the bases loaded in the first at-bat since his homer, Gallas walked to score Jack Goihl. With the bases still loaded, the next two St. Paul batters were hit by pitch to trim the X’s lead to 6-5.
The X’s scored three more runs in the top of the seventh. With runners on second and first, Washington and Lang stole third and second base respectively. Gleason then hit a ground-rule double down the left field line to score both Washington and Lang. After a pair of walks to load the bases, Bennie hit a sacrifice fly to score Gleason and extend the X’s lead to 9-5.
Brady Shoemaker and Gallas led off the ninth with a pair of one-pitch homers to keep things interesting, but the X’s induced three straight outs to end the game.
Ryan Flores allowed three hits, two runs, two walks, hit two batters and struck out six in four innings of relief to earn the win for Sioux City. Washington and Lang both went 2-for-4. Bennie went 2-for-3.
Shoemaker and Gallas went a combined 4-for-7 with three homers and four RBIs for St. Paul.