SAINT PAUL, Minnesota -- Geraldo Valentin hit a two-run double in the seventh inning, and the Cleburne Railroaders held on for a 6-3 win over the St. Paul Saints in the series opener at CHS Field on Friday night.
Valentin’s double extended Cleburne’s lead to four in the seventh inning after he drove in a run with a sacrifice fly in the fifth.
Patrick Mincey gave up three runs on six hits over seven innings for his eighth win of the year, while Winston Abreu worked a perfect ninth inning for his league-leading 21st save.
Cleburne took an early lead on Alex Polston’s two-run single in the second before Kes Carter tied the game with a two-out, two-run homer in the bottom of the inning.
Mitch Abeita drove in his first run as a Railroader with a sac-fly in the third inning, and Mitch Glasser walked and scored in both the fifth and seventh innings.
With one out in the fourth, Carter hit a fly ball to left-center, but K.C. Huth lept at the wall and took away extra bases before doubling up Brady Shoemaker at first to end the inning and preserve Cleburne’s lead.
Cleburne pitching struck out 10 with no walks -- the fifth time the Railroaders haven’t issued a walk this year.
Game 2 of the three-game set is scheduled for Saturday. First pitch is 7:05 p.m. and can be heard live on the Railroader Radio Network with pregame coverage beginning 20 minutes prior.
Cleburne returns home for the final three-game series at The Depot on Friday, Aug. 25. Good seats are still available and can be purchased at www.railroaderbaseball.com or by visiting the box office located near the main gate at the stadium.