06/26/2016 3:32 PM -
KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Newly-signed pitcher Mike Kickham gave the T-Bones the type of start they needed, but Fargo-Moorhead’s offense broke through and went on to beat Kansas City, 9-6, Sunday afternoon at CommunityAmerica Ballpark.
Kickham, a former major-league pitcher for San Francisco who signed earlier Sunday, was starting after Kansas City’s first two starters in this series had given up a combined 18 runs to the RedHawks. With the T-Bones leading 1-0 after the first inning, thanks to a home run by Tyler Massey, Kickham faced eight batters, five of which singled, in the second, but he surrendered only two runs.
Kickham then faced one over the minimum — striking out two — in the third inning.
Kansas City tied the game in the bottom of the third against RedHawks starter Taylor Stanton (3-2). Dalton Wheat singled to right field. He advanced to second on a fielder’s choice by Brian Erie and then scored when the next batter, Starlin Rodriguez, reached first on an error by the shortstop.
The tie did not last long. Kansas City reliever Josh Tols came in for Kickham in the fifth and allowed four runs. With a run across after a throwing error to third by Erie, Tols walked K.D. Kang, putting runners on the corners. Brian Humphries ended that with a three-run home run, his second three-run homer of the series. Despite striking out the following two batters, the RedHawks took the lead, 6-2.
Trailing 7-2 in the bottom of the eighth, the T-Bones rallied, scoring four runs. Starlin Rodriguez doubled to centerfield and advanced on a wild pitch to Vladimir Frias. That was the end for Fargo-Moorhead’s starter Stanton, who went 7-plus innings, allowing two runs and five hits. A single by Massey scored Rodriguez. Jake Blackwood and Brandon Tierney each singled and loaded the bases. Brett Wiley advanced to first on an error by the third baseman, which scored Massey. Wheat roped a two-run single to right against reliever Jose Almarante. That brought Kansas City to within one, 7-6, but that’s all the T-Bones were to put together.
Fargo-Moorhead added two insurance runs in the top of the ninth against relievers Johnny Shuttlesworth and Mark Haynes.
Kickham allowed two runs and seven hits, all singles, while walking one and striking out four in his Kansas City debut.
The T-Bones (14-22) and RedHawks (20-15) are scheduled to conclude their four-game series Monday night at 7:05. Tickets are available by calling the Providence Medical Center Box Office at CommunityAmerica Ballpark at 913-328-5618.