New-look RedHawks make easy work of Winnipeg
Replacement players paid dividends for Fargo-Moorhead in a win over the Goldeyes in the opener of their final regular-season series.
WINNIPEG — Give Fargo-Moorhead scouts credit, at least for one game they appear to have filled out the RedHawks' roster with solid replacement players.
With five new players in the starting lineup for the first time, almost all five of the nine the team signed for the weekend series against Winnipeg played key roles in the RedHawks' 10-4 victory on Friday before 2,402 at Shaw Park.
Because of vaccine status and personal preferences of some RedHawks players, the team traveled to Canada for the first time this season with just 12 of its 24-man roster. All nine of the new RedHawks have professional experience.
Including the five new signees, starting pitcher Bret Helton pinch hit and subbed in for Ed Reichenbach in the t DH spot.
In the second inning, replacement players Jacob Bockelie and Carson McCurdy hit back-to-back doubles and Reichenbach singled in another run for a 2-0 lead.
The RedHawks made it 5-0 in the fourth when new player Brendon Dadson and Bockelie both singled, Dadson scored on an error, a second run scored on Reichenbach's sacrifice fly, and McCurdy scored a third run on another Goldeyes error.
In the fifth, new player Cody Lovejoy hit a three-run home run, and in the sixth, Sam Dexter doubled in a run and then scored on Dadson's ground out.
RedHawks starter Jon Ludwig made good use of the run support, allowing just a run on four hits in five innings. Tyler Grauer pitched three strong innings but ran into some problems in the ninth, giving up a couple of runs. Brady Stover faced two batters in the ninth, getting a double play on the last to end the game.
Combined, Dadson, McCurdy, Lovejoy and Bockelie were 6-for-17 with five RBI and eight runs scored.
The RedHawks have already secured a North Division playoff spot but would avoid a one-game playoff game against Milwaukee if they could catch and pass division-leading Chicago. The Dogs defeated Kane County on Friday and remain 1-1/2 games ahead of the RedHawks.
F-M and Winnipeg play the second of a four-game set at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 4, at Shaw Park.