Dogs (54-36, 3rd North 5.5 GB) vs. Saints (56-34, 2nd North, 3.5 GB)
Saturday, 8/24: LHP D.J. Snelten (6-3, 3.40 ERA) vs. RHP Ryan Zimmerman (7-3, 3.91 ERA)
Sunday, 8/25: LHP Jake Dahlberg (8-6, 4.90 ERA) vs. RHP Landon Beck (5-2, 3.86 ERA)
Monday, 8/26: RHP Carlos Zambrano (3-1, 5.47 ERA) vs. TBA
Tuesday, 8/27: LHP Austin Wright (6-7, 4.09 ERA) vs. RHP Eddie Medina (9-2, 2.80 ERA)
SERIES NOTES: Series Notes Aug 24-27 ST
St. PAUL, Minn. — The Chicago Dogs won their fifth straight series on Friday, sealing the feat with a 6-1 win over the Winnipeg Goldeyes. A dominant pitching staff, which a 3.00 ERA over its last 10 games, led the way. Austin Wright allowed two hits over six innings while striking out nine, and Luke Westphal dazzled in his return to the rotation, striking out eight and allowing three hits.
The Dogs (54-36, 3rd North) have won eight of their last 10 games, powered offensively by Gustavo Pierre and Jordan Dean. Pierre, who is batting .359 over his last 10 contests, enjoyed a stretch of three straight games with a home run from Tuesday to Thursday. Dean is batting .400 over his last 10 with seven RBI. Keon Barnum notched a multi-hit game in the series but is still on watch to hit his 31st home run, which would give him the American Association record for most home runs in a season.
Chicago enters the series against the St. Paul Saints just two games behind the Saints for the final playoff spot in the North. Seven of the 10 games remaining on the Dogs’ regular-season schedule are against the Saints, including four on the road at CHS Field. Saturday night’s opener will start at 7:05 PM, Sunday’s game at 5:05 PM, and Monday and Tuesday’s games both with 7:05 PM first-pitch times.
LHP D.J. Snelten will start the series opener for Chicago. He has been the Dogs’ best starter in the month of August. Snelten’s last appearance against the Milwaukee Milkmen was the fourth straight in which he allowed one earned run in seven or more innings. He has also walked two or fewer batters in all but one of his previous 11 starts. Opponents are hitting just .226 off the University of Minnesota product, and his 3.40 ERA is the lowest it has been since in over two months.
LHP Jake Dahlberg will take the hill on Sunday evening against the Saints. He is coming off back-to-back seven-plus inning outings, surrendering just six hits over those two outings combined while striking out 10. His walk total is at just 27 through 97.1 innings of work this season.
RHP Carlos Zambrano gets the ball for the Dogs in game three. The former Chicago Cub has made three starts for Chicago. The highlight of those was a gem against the Winnipeg Goldeyes on August 16 in which gave up just one run and no walks, striking out a season-high seven batters. His command has been his calling card all season, and he has walked just one of the past 43 batters he has faced.
LHP Austin Wright will close out the series against St. Paul on Tuesday night. Wright turned in one of his best outings of the season his last time out against the Goldeyes, a 2-0 win for the Dogs in which he surrendered just four baserunners and struck out nine. His 124 strikeouts tie him for the league lead with Winnipeg’s Mitchell Lambson, though Wright has reached that mark in 45 fewer innings.
SCOUTING THE SAINTS
The St. Paul Saints (56-34, 2nd North) are red-hot. Winners of nine straight before losing in walk-off fashion on Friday night to the Gary SouthShore RailCats, the Saints have found their recent run of success by way of their pitching staff. St. Paul’s pitchers have allowed a measly 2.8 runs per game over that stretch. The rotation is highlighted by Tuesday starter Eddie Medina, whose 2.80 ERA is the second-highest among active pitchers in the American Association.
Offensively, the Saints’ 95 home runs as a team make them the only ones in the league even close to the Dogs’ 111 that they’ve hit in 2019. Dan Motl and his .329 average paces the offense, along with infielder Josh Allen, who has 17 home runs on the season.
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