Springfield, MO – An RBI infield single from LF Magneuris Sierra plated C Gabriel Lino from third base in the bottom of the ninth, propelling the Springfield Cardinals to the 4-3 walk-off win against the Corpus Christi Hooks before 3,677 fans at Hammons Field on Tuesday night.
The Hooks (26-25) swung in front in the top of the second against RHP Chris Ellis, making his Springfield debut after joining the club from AAA-Memphis. 1B Jon Singleton started the stanza with a free pass, before Ellis battled back with a strikeout. After a single from C Garrett Stubbs, SS Jack Mayfield pulled an RBI double into the left field corner, scoring Singleton for the game’s first run. A walk and a strike out loaded the bases with two away for CF Drew Ferguson. Ferguson was hit by a pitch, forcing in Stubbs from third to make it a 2-0 Hooks lead.
The Cardinals (26-23) started chipping away with a two-out rally against LHP Kent Emanuel in the bottom of the fourth. With two down and the bases empty, SS Alex Mejia initially extended the inning with a base hit, followed in suit by a single from 1B Casey Grayson. 3B Jacob Wilson then laced an RBI single to left field, bringing in Mejia to slice the Cardinals deficit in half, 2-1.
After Ellis dealt a 1-2-3 top of the fifth, which included his eighth strikeout of the night, the Cardinals completed the comeback in the bottom of the fifth. Leading off against Emanuel, 2B Dickie Joe Thon slugged a solo shot to center field, squaring the score at 2-2.
The Hooks, however, tilted the lead right back into their favor in the top of the sixth. Leading off the frame, 3B J.D. Davis belted his league-best 12th home run of the year, a solo shot that lifted the Hooks into the 3-2 advantage.
Springfield came roaring back in the bottom of the seventh against LHP Alex Winkelman. C Gabriel Lino sliced a double to start the stanza, before moving to second on a sacrifice bunt from Thon. CF Oscar Mercado delivered a game-tying RBI double pulled to left field, plating Lino and evening the score, 3-3.
The tie remained until the Cardinals rallied in the bottom of the ninth inning against RHP Jacob Dorris (L, 1-1). Lino again served as the catalyst, drilling his second double of the night to start the inning. After Thon laid down another sacrifice bunt to advance Lino to third, Dorris dug in with a strikeout of Mercado for the inning’s second out. LF Magneuris Sierra, however, tapped the eighth pitch of his at-bat just inside the third base line, serving as the RBI infield single that brought home Lino and sent the Cardinals to the 4-3 walk-off win. RHP Kevin Herget (W, 1-2) dealt 1.1 scoreless relief innings to register the win for Springfield.