LINCOLN, NE – The Sioux City Explorers (55-35) scored nine runs on 18 hits and beat the Lincoln Saltdogs (42-50) 9-4 in the regular season home finale at Haymarket Park.
The Saltdogs pitching staff allowed a season high 18 hits and tied their season-high by walking nine batters. Dimitri Kourtis was charged with his second loss after giving up seven runs on 12 hits over five innings.
The Saltdogs are four games up on the Gary SouthShore RailCats and Kansas City T-Bones in the Central Division with nine games left in the season.
Sioux City got on the board first. They scored two runs in the first two innings on three hits. Daniel Jackson blasted a solo home run in the top of the second.
After Kourtis shut them down in the third inning, the X’s scored more in the fourth inning. They knocked across two runs on three hits and three walks to make it 4-0.
Curt Smith put the Saltdogs on the board in the bottom of the fourth. The first baseman hit a home run to left field to start the inning. Randolph Oduber added a hit in the inning but the Saltdogs couldn’t scratch another run across.
Sioux City answered in the next two innings. They sent 14 batters to the plate over the two innings and scored three runs on six hits.
The X’s got another couple of runs in the eighth inning. Levon Washington and Eudor Garcia both doubled and Saltdogs third baseman Juan Martinez made an error to help the two runs to score.
The Saltdogs went deep for the second time in the next half inning. Christian Ibarra launched a three-run homer to cut the lead to get to the final score of 9-4.
Curt Smith had another multi-hit game and extended his hit streak to 17 games. He is four hits away from getting his 1000th career hit.
Lincoln finished their regular season home slate at an outstanding 35-17 record.
The Saltdogs face Fargo-Moorhead in a double header on Monday. First pitch in the first game is at 6:05 PM with coverage beginning at 6:00 PM on ESPN 1480 and saltdogs.com.
For the latest information on the Saltdogs follow the team on Facebook and Twitter/Instagram @saltdogsball.