(St. Cloud, MN) – A big night from shortstop Bobby Munoz and solid pitching from starter Luke Vine (1-1) led to a MoonDogs (4-7) victory over the division-leading St. Cloud River Bats (8-4) on Monday night in St. Cloud. The MoonDogs scored four runs on five hits in the top of the first and held on for a 6-3 win.
Every MoonDog batter reached base and Mankato totaled 16 hits, led by Munoz, who went 4-for-5 with a double and two RBI. Newcomer first baseman Mike Lobacz was also 3-for-5 with a double and scored once. Designated hitter Mike Melillo was 1-for-4 with a double, one run, and 2 RBI. Third baseman Nate Hanson and right fielder CJ Belanger each drove in a run for the MoonDogs, while second baseman James Keithley, catcher Ben Geelan, and left fielder Jovan Rodriguez all scored once on the evening.
MoonDog starter Luke Vine threw six strong innings, giving up three runs on six hits and striking out six. Josh Castanza made a relief appearance, throwing two no-hit innings. Blake Devries recorded his second save of the season, pitching a scoreless ninth.
For the River Bats, left fielder Tim Wheeler recorded three of the River Bats six hits, going 3-for-4 at the plate with two doubles, two runs and one RBI. First baseman Adam Kampsen and third baseman Brian Hernandez each drove in a run, while right fielder Jeff Hulett went 1-for-3 and scored once.
St. Cloud starter Adam Kramer (1-0) pitched four innings, giving up four earned runs on nine hits. Relievers Evan Kohli, Trevor Fox, and Sean Wideberg combined to finish off the game, throwing five innings and giving up one run on seven hits.
Game Two of the series is tonight in St. Cloud at 7:05 pm. Following tonight’s game the MoonDogs are off to Alexandria for a two-game series with the Beetles. Friday night, the MoonDogs return home to face the Battle Creek Bombers. It’s MAYBA Night! All kids wearing their MAYBA jersey get in free!