Martinez, Rox Rock MoonDogs to Complete Series Sweep in Final Matchup
By: Connor Wachtel
St. Cloud, Minn. — The St. Cloud Rox completed a two-game series sweep of the Mankato MoonDogs with 10-0 blowout win, Monday.
The MoonDogs season struggles with the Rox carried through finale as Monday marked the last matchup of the season between the Minnesota Northwoods League foes. The Rox outscored the visiting MoonDogs, 19-1, and were outhit, 25-7, in the final two meetings of the season. Overall, Mankato finished the 2020 campaign with a 2-7 showing against St. Cloud.
Ben Norman’s first-pitch leadoff triple put the Rox in business in the first, Monday. A few batters later, Norman scooted home and beat out a throw with a head-first slide to score the game’s first run.
The Rox lead was upped when Collin Montez singled to score Jack Kelly. Sam Ireland followed suit with another RBI single to score Jordan Barth and make it 3-0. A bases-loaded walk rounded out the scoring in the fourth and put the Rox up 4-0.
Jack Winkler put St. Cloud up 5-0 with another RBI single in the bottom of the fifth.
St. Cloud batted around their order in the seventh and scored five more times on four hits to double their lead, 10-0. They ultimately held on to win by double digits, Monday.
The Rox had the only error in Monday’s affair and outhit the MoonDogs, 12-5. Mankato’s designated hitter, Tommy Beres, saw his bat stay hot for the Dogs with a 3-for-4 night.
The win was earned by the Rox R.J. Martinez (3-0), who eventually was honored with Northwoods League Pitcher of the Night for his performance. The right hander pitched seven innings of shutout baseball while allowing five hits. Martinez walked one and struck out 10 others.
Hunter Conrad (0-1) fell victim of the loss in his first outing with the MoonDogs. He pitched 5.2 innings, gave up seven hits and five runs. Conrad walked three and struck out a pair in his debut. In the eighth, MoonDogs’ outfielder Adam LaRock moved to the mound for an inning of relief and struck out two while stranding the bases loaded.
For tonight’s box score click HERE.
Tomorrow, the Mankato MoonDogs (17-22) are back at Franklin Rogers Park to take on the Willmar Stingers (19-20) at 6:35 p.m.
The Mankato MoonDogs are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Having completed its’ 26th season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, over 230 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time All-Star and 2016 Roberto Clemente Award winner Curtis Granderson, three-time Cy Young Award winner and World Series Champion Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and MLB All-Star Jordan Zimmermann (DET). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.mankatomoondogs.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the MoonDogs as your favorite team.