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X’s Earn Shutout Behind Rodriguez’ Nine Strikeouts


Sioux City, IA (August, 30th, 2022) - Nivaldo Rodriguez struck out nine batters across seven shutout innings and the Sioux City Explorers won their third consecutive game with a 2-0 shutout victory over the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks. 

The Explorers picked up the only run they needed in the bottom of the first. Danny Amaral reached on a single to center field to lead off the frame. He stole second and third, giving him 45 swiped bags this season. That tied him for the Explorers single season franchise record with Michael Lang from the 2015 season. 

Amaral then scored on a Danry Vasquez ground ball to second base to give the X’s a 1-0 lead. 

Nivaldo Rodriguez was dominant in his fourth start with the X’s. He retired the first twelve RadHawks that he faced and allowed only three total base runners on a pair of hits and a walk. For a third consecutive start Rodriguez collected nine strikeouts. 

Twice Fargo stranded the tying run at third. In the fifth Leo Pina singled, and stole second and reached third on an error before being stranded. In the seventh after a Boscan double that led off the inning, Pina hit a fly ball to right field, Boscan attempted to tag and score but was thrown out at the plate to keep the Explorers lead intact at 1-0. 

Taking the tough luck loss for Fargo was Tyler Grauer (10-4) he only allowed the first inning run while tossing six innings and allowed four hits with a walk and three strikeouts. 

Sioux City added an insurance run in the eighth. Amaral was hit by a pitch with one out and advanced to third on a pair of wild pitches. He scored on a Vasquez sacrifice fly to left field to give Sioux City a 2-0 lead. 

Thomas McIlraith (19) earned the save with a scoreless ninth inning with a strikeout. 

The X’s win pushes them to a 47-47 record. It’s the first time Sioux City has held a .500 record since May 19th. The win also keeps them three games up on the Lincoln Saltdogs for the final wild card spot in the West Division. 

The Explorers and RedHawks meet up for the second game of the series on Wednesday at 7:05 pm. Right hander Zach Hedges (4-7, 5.11) gets the ball for the X’s and righty Ben Allison (3-7, 6.78) will oppose him for Fargo.