Earley Sets RBI Record As Mines Blow Out Florence

Earley Sets RBI Record As Mines Blow Out Florence

The Southern Illinois Miners pounded out a season-high 18 hits as a team, and scored five runs in the top of the first inning to take a lead they would never relinquish in an 11-5 victory over the Florence Y'alls at Y'alls Ballpark on Sunday afternoon. In the process, outfielder Nolan Earley recorded three RBIs to pass Joey Metropoulos' franchise record of 208 and set a new benchmark in Miners history.

Southern Illinois busted the game open right away, as the first five Miners batters all got hits in the top of the first inning off Pablo Arevalo (1-3). Bryant Flete led off with a double, and scored one pitch later on an RBI single by Earley to make it 1-0, with Earley tying Metropoulos' record on his first swing of the day. Ariel Sandoval singled to move Earley to second base, and Jamey Smart brought in a second run with a single of his own. Jared Mang then followed with an RBI double for a 3-0 lead, and Ian Walters' RBI groundout increased the lead to 4-0. Anthony Brocato capped off the big frame with an RBI single as the Miners jumped in front by a 5-0 score to set the tone.

The onslaught would not stop there. In the second inning, with a man on base, Smart hit a two-run home run to right-center field to make it 7-0. Later in the inning, Brocato drove in Mang with two outs on an RBI double down the left field line, increasing the Miners advantage to 8-0.

Florence would get two runs back against Stevie Ledesma (5-1) in the bottom of the second inning to make it 8-2, but the Miners would get both runs back in the top of the third, as Earley cracked his 10th home run of the season over the left field fence with a runner on second base, making the score 10-2 and setting a new Miners franchise record for runs batted in.

The Y'alls would not score again until the bottom of the sixth, when they plated three runs to get within 10-5. The home team would get no closer, however, as the Southern Illinois bullpen silenced the Florence bats in the late innings.

The Miners themselves would get an insurance run on a wild pitch in the ninth inning for the final margin, and finished with a season-high 18 hits. Smart tied a career-high with four hits in going 4-for-5 with two runs and three RBIs to lead the way, with Brocato, Mang, and Sandoval all enjoying three-hit nights as well. In addition, Earley finished with three record-breaking RBIs in going 2-for-6, as six Miners had multiple hits in the blowout win.

Southern Illinois will return home next for a big three-game West Division series against the Evansville Otters beginning on Tuesday, August 31, at Rent One Park, with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m.

The Southern Illinois Miners are the Frontier League's most-successful franchise since debuting in 2007, winning the 2012 Frontier League Championship as well as division titles in 2010, 2014, 2015 and 2016. They have been awarded the Frontier League Organization of the Year award three times since their inception, and also set a new Frontier League attendance record in their inaugural season. In addition, they have sent 60 players to MLB organizations in their 14 years of operation. For ticket information, contact the box office at (618) 998-8499. For additional information, visit our website at www.southernillinoisminers.com.