YANKTON, S.D. -- Mitch Glasser took on a new role this year as the Sioux Falls Canaries' hitting coach. Tonight at Riverside Field, he showed his teammates how it's done.
The Birds' second baseman drove in three runs in a 7-1 victory over the Sioux City Explorers Monday. Sioux Falls earned a measure of revenge after a loss to the X's in Huron Sunday night.
"I tried to be nice and slow and stay back," Glasser said. "A lot of timesthe first game in guys get jumpy, and I tried to slow down and do the opposite."
Five Canaries pitchers entered the game, none of whom allowed an earned run.
The Birds broke the game open in the second against Sioux City right-hander Max Duval. Adrian Nieto led the inning off with a walk, and back-to-back singles from Alay Lago and Trae Santos loaded the bases with none out.
Two batters later, Andrew Ely drove in the game's first run with a bases-loaded walk. Brett Vertigan followed it up with an RBI free pass of his own. Then Mitch Glasser hit a hard ground ball through the left side, scoring two and putting the Birds up 4-0.
Birds starter Sam Bragg worked three scoreless innings, recording his last out via a strikeout of Michael Lang.
Mark Syler handled the next three frames for the Birds. He retired the first six hitters he faced, but allowed an unearned run when making an errant throw to first in the sixth, making it 4-1. He'd finish the outing with three strikeouts.
Brian Heldman worked around two singles in a scoreless seventh on the mound. Kevin Simmons followed him, striking out the side in the eighth in an impressive performance.
Reilly Hovis worked a scoreless ninth inning to finish off the game for Canaries pitching.
Both teams agreed to play an extended bottom of the ninth to get more preseason reps. The Birds took advantage of the opportunity. Mitch Glasser knocked an RBI double and Clint Coulter delivered an RBI single to make it 6-1 Sioux Falls. Trae Santos followed them up with an RBI single of his own to bring the game to its final score.
The Birds and X's have a couple days off before meeting again for a spring training game Thursday night in Vermillion, South Dakota. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m.