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Saints and Railcats battle for the wildcard

With the Saints trailing the Gary SouthShore Railcats for the lone wildcard playoff spot the two teams started a three game series on July 26th at Midway. The first two games were played on cold and damp days in St. Paul with the temperatures hovering in the fifty's for Friday and Saturday night. It did not feel like a typical July weekend in Minnesota.

#regeeinthepark collage

The first game of the series was a back and forth affair for the first four innings. The Railcats scored one run in the first and two in the third. The Saints scored two runs in the second and one in the fourth. The 3-3 tie game lasted through the fifth and sixth innings before the Railcats broke through with one run in the seventh inning. That one run would prove to be the game winner as the Railcats bullpen shut the Saints down for the remainder of the game and sealed a 4-3 victory. The promotion for the night was Take Me to Regions Night presented by Regions Hospital. The night included the first giveaway of the Regee Take Me to Regions doll to the first section in the ballpark who had a foul ball hit to them. We were lucky enough to receive a Regee doll during the night and have since started a #regeeinthepark hashtag on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram where we take pictures of Regee at different parts of the ballpark and post them to the social media sites. Kinda silly yes, but fun. This was also a Friday fireworks night presented by Xcel Energy. My MVP for the game is Jose Hernandez (2-4, 2B, R, RBI)

Starting pitcher Billy Soule

Saturday night's game started off with a bang for the Saints as Willie Cabrera hit his 10th home run of the season (a three run shot) in the bottom of the first inning. After that the Saints and starting pitcher, Billy Soule, never looked back. Soule pitched six strong innings allowing only one run as the Saints went on to win the game 6-1. The promotion for the night was Good Eggs and Scams, Part II presented by the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota. The night started with fans entering the gate receiving plastic eggs that could contain the chance to win a Egg Grill. Also between innings the P.A. announcers talked about past scams that have really happened to people to remind everyone to be aware that when something sounds to good to be true, it probably is. My MVP for the game is Willie Cabrera (3-4, R, 3RBI, HR) Honorable mention to Billy Soule (6IP, 1ER, 2K's)

Our signed George Tsamis card from the 2013 Saints team set

The game on Sunday brought with it warmer weather (after Friday and Saturday's games it felt like it was 100 degrees in the sun) but at the start of the game it seemed like the Saints bats were left in the cold over night. The Railcats led the game 2-0 through four innings before the Saints scored one run in the fifth. Then with the Railcats leading 2-1 the Saints bats heated up as they scored four runs in the sixth inning. The big blow being a Dwight Childs two run home run. From there the Saints scored one more run in the seventh and two in the eighth, going on to win the game big by a score of 8-3. There were two promotions for this Sunday day game. The first was the Saints annual baseball card team set giveaway. We of course got there early to get our cards and were even lucky enough to have manager George Tsamis sign his from the set for us after the game (the second set was left unopened, in case any collectors out there cringed when they knew I opened the plastic wrap). The second promotion was The Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2013 visits Midway Stadium. This promotion had a Saints twist to it. The twist being that no one was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame this year. It was amazing to me (as a huge baseball fan) how many fans in attendance didn't realize the promotion was a hoax. There was a buzz even in the parking lot before the game of people wondering who would be there and where they would be to sign autographs. Well done Saints, well done. This game also gave us the opportunity to meet a couple of fans from Gary, IN that were friends with Kevin and Bill whom we normally tailgate with. They were on a season ticket holder trip with the team that took them to St. Paul and a couple other cities that have teams in the league. The trip sounded like a lot of fun and had us wondering when the Saints would be putting together a package for their season ticket holders like this? My MVP for the game is Dwight Childs (2-3, 2R, 2RBI, HR) Honorable mention to Dan Kaczrowski (4-5, 2B, R, 2RBI)

The Saints next home series started Tuesday July 30th (new blog on that coming soon) against the division leading Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks. Were you there?

Go Saints!