Before Sunday's game with the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks, Winnipeg Goldeyes manager Rick Forney said his team “had been punched in the gut.”
Despite winning 9-0 on Saturday night, the Goldeyes were eliminated from the American Association playoffs. Even though the Fish will have the same or a better regular season record this year than during last year's championship season, they will play their last game on Monday night.
Sunday afternoon in front of 6,166 spectators at Shaw Park, the Goldeyes looked like a team that had been metaphorically “punched in the gut,” losing 4-2 to the RedHawks in a meaningless game for both teams.
With the loss, the Goldeyes fell to 55-44, while Fargo improved to 62-37. The Goldeyes season will end on Monday, while Fargo will move on to face the Gary SouthShore RailCats in the American Association semifinal.
On Sunday, the Goldeyes simply couldn't solve the mystery of Fargo ace Jake Laber. The lefty held the Goldeyes to just one run on three hits over six complete innings, as Fargo built a 4-1 lead and coasted to its 10th win in 11 outings against Winnipeg this season.
Winnipeg opened the scoring in the bottom of the third, as Kevin Moesquit singled, went to second on a throwing error by the pitcher on a failed pick-off attempt, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on a ground out by Fehlandt Lentini.
After Fargo scored twice in the fourth and twice more in the seventh, Winnipeg added a run in the bottom of the seventh as Ray Sadler was hit by a pitch, went to second on a wild pitch and scored on a double by Casey Haerther.
But that was it, as the Goldeyes couldn't put a dent in Fargo relievers Joe Harris and Nathan Kilcrease. Laber (10-5, 3.82 ERA) was the winning pitcher for Fargo, while Kilcrease picked up his seventh save.
Salamida (7-1, 2.23 ERA) took the loss for Winnipeg.
On Monday night at 7 at Shaw Park, the Goldeyes will complete this three-game series with Fargo and play their final game of the 2013 season. Righthander Matt Rusch will get the start for the Goldeyes.