SIOUX CITY, Iowa. -- The Sioux Falls Canaries used a strong start from starting pitcher Kyle Ruwe and four-run fourth inning to cruise to a 7-2 win over the Sioux City Explorers on Friday night in Sioux City.
Trailing 1-0 in the fourth inning, Cory Morales worked a leadoff walk against Sioux City starter Andy Noga (1-1) and scored moments later when J.P. Ramirez scorched a double to the right center field gap. Two batters later, Jared Clark launched a two-run home run to left field, his fourth of the year and third in the last four games, to extend the lead to 4-1.
In the seventh inning, Nick Van Stratten led off with a line drive home run against reliever Yunier Colon over the left wall for his first round-tripper of the year. Colon later walked in two batters and gave the Birds a 7-1 lead.
Despite giving up 11 hits, Ruwe (2-0) struck out seven men and yielded just one extra-base hit and two runs. He worked out of tough spots all night, forcing Sioux City to strand 10 base runners. Ruwe beat Sioux City for the second straight time this season.
Reliever Kirk Clark tossed a perfect ninth to close out the contest.
The Canaries bats collected 14 hits. Every player in the lineup collected at least one hit, and five had two-hit nights. Clark had the only mutli-RBI night, finishing 1-for-4 with two RBI.
Game two of the three-game series is at 7:05 p.m. on Saturday, May 25, at Lewis and Clark Park in Sioux City. The game will be broadcast on Sioux Falls Sports Radio KWSN 1230-AM, 98.1-FM and www.kwsn.com.