GARY, IN – Wilfredo Gimenez hit a two-out single to knock in Frank Martinez and lift the Gary SouthShore RailCats to a 3-2 walk-off win over the Lincoln Saltdogs in the regular season finale. After not getting beat by a walk-off all season, the Saltdogs were walked-off in consecutive games to end the year.
The Saltdogs finish the regular season with a 58-41 record and the Central Division Championship. The 58 wins is the second-highest total in franchise history. The Saltdogs open the playoffs by hosting the Winnipeg Goldeyes on Wednesday and Thursday. First pitch is at 6:45 PM for both games.
Curt Smith tallied two hits in the game to bring his career total to 1001 hits. He lined an opposite-field single in the first inning to get his 1000th. He has 479 hits in his Saltdogs career.
The Saltdogs jumped in front to start the game. Christian Ibarra started a string of four straight hits that netted one run for Lincoln.
Gary SouthShore tied it up in the second inning. Kris Goodman started the frame with a bloop single and stole second base. Two outs later, Andy DeJesus came through with a single to even the score.
Cesar Valera jump-started the Saltdogs offense in the sixth. The All-Star tripled to start the inning and scored on a sacrifice fly by Brent Dean to make it 2-1.
Gary tied it up again in the next inning. Reliever Casey Crosby walked two hitters with two outs and gave up a double to Martinez to allow the RailCats to equal the score.
Martinez tripled for Gary with one out in the bottom of the ninth. Two batters later, Gimenez notched the game-winning single to left field to win it for the RailCats.
The victory gave the RailCats the wild card entry to the playoffs. They wouldn’t have made the playoffs if they lost.
Seth Webster was great in his start for the Saltdogs. He allowed just one run over 6.1 innings by scattering nine hits. He struck out six and didn’t walk a batter.
The Saltdogs made one error in the game and preserved their league-record .982 fielding percentage. The old record was .980 set by Wichita.
The playoffs begin on Wednesday. First pitch against the Goldeyes is at 6:45 PM with coverage beginning at 6:15 PM on ESPN 1480 and saltdogs.com.