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RedHawks slugger John Silviano to miss remainder of American Association baseball finals with leg injury

Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks right fielder John Silviano to miss remaining of American Association baseball championship series with lower-leg injury.

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RedHawks right fielder John Silviano is going to miss the remainder of the American Association baseball championship series with a lower leg injury.
Alyssa Goelzer/The Forum
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FARGO — The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks will be without one of their most clutch hitters for the remainder of the American Association baseball postseason.

Right fielder John Silviano suffered a lower-leg fracture in Sunday's 7-3 victory against the Milwaukee Milkmen in Game 2 of the best-of-5 championship series for the Miles Wolff Cup.

“Unfortunately this time of year, you’re not going to find anybody to replace John Silviano," RedHawks bench coach Anthony Renz said. "You probably can’t find anybody league wide to replace John Silviano.”

The championship series is tied at 1-1 entering Game 3, which is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Newman Outdoor Field. Rookie left-hander Peyton Wigginton is slated to start for the RedHawks, who are trying to win their first league championship since 2010, and first in the American Association.

“It’s do-or-die every night so I think the guys will respond and if anything will rally around John because they know how hard he tried to stay in the game," Renz said.

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Silviano collided with RedHawks second baseman Peter Maris in the second inning of Sunday's game on a fly ball to short right field that Silviano caught. Both players were shaken up on the collision, but remained in the game.

Nick Novak would later come in for Silviano in the eighth inning. Renz said it's likely Silviano injured his leg on the collision with Maris.

“He played on one leg and gave us an effort that will never be matched," Renz said. “No one can ever second guess the guy’s effort and will to win.”

Silviano went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored Sunday before he left the game. He's been the team's top hitter this postseason. The left-handed swinging Silviano is batting .444 (12 of 27) with two home runs and nine RBIs in eight playoff games.

“The league has tabbed him ‘Mr. September’ for a reason and he’s been as advertised in these moments," Renz said. “It’s not ideal, I’d rather have John Silviano in the lineup, but I think the guys are going to fight for him.”

Renz said Novak would likely be inserted into left field and Alec Olund moved from left field to right field, where Silviano usually plays. Renz said he's not exactly sure how the RedHawks will structure the batting order with Silviano out. Silviano batted in the No. 4 spot in the lineup Sunday.

“It’s a big loss, but Nick Novak has been a plug-and-play guy for most of the year," Renz said. “We’ll probably shift around the lineup a little bit."

The RedHawks are playing in the American Association championship series for a second consecutive season. They lost to the Kansas City Monarchs in the finals a season ago.

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F-M is going to have to compete for the title this season without one of it's best hitters and postseason performers.

“It’s not ideal, I’d rather have John Silviano in the lineup, but I think the guys are going to fight for him," Renz said.

"He's not easily replaced, but fortunately we have a fairly deep lineup," added RedHawks manager Chris Coste. "(Silviano) always steps up in the playoffs and he makes everyone around him feel more comfortable."

Peterson covers college athletics for The Forum, including Concordia College and Minnesota State Moorhead. He also covers the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks independent baseball team and helps out with North Dakota State football coverage. Peterson has been working at the newspaper since 1996.
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