RedHawks manager Coste says fans felt ‘World Series’ win in championship-cleaning Game 5 at Newman – INFORMATION

FARGO – An emotional Chris Coste holds the microphone as the Miles Wolff Cup is presented to the Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks to win the American Association Baseball Championship Thursday night at Newman Outdoor Field.

The RedHawks manager made sure to address the fans who stayed for the postgame festivities.

“We may not have 5,000 people here, but we have the right people here for every single playoff game,” Coste said. “Excellent. Excellent. Give yourself a hand. … ready to go.”

The Redhawks recovered from a five-run deficit after six innings for a suspenseful 9-8 win against the Milwaukee Milkmen in a deciding Game 5 in front of 1,236 fans.

A dramatic and sometimes lightning night at the ballpark ended with FM winning their first American Association championship.

Coste, who won the World Series championship with the Philadelphia Phillies in 2008, said, “The fans wanted the championship as much as us, and as players, coaches, managers, who make it feel like a World Series.”

The Redhawks won the league championship for the first time since 2010 and their sixth overall. The last five titles came in the Northern League, which FM was a member of 1996–2010, before moving to the American Association in 2011.

The Redhawks went 8-3 on Thursday night after the Milkman had six runs in the sixth inning, a knockout blow at the time. However, FM returned to the game with a seventh innings total of five runs, which eventually forced an extra innings.

“It was incredible to win,” said RedHawks player personnel consultant Jeff Bittiger, who has been associated with the franchise as a player, coach or consultant since its first season. “Who comes back 8-3 in seventh in Game 5? We could have played that game maybe 100 times and 99 times, we’d have lost. I don’t believe in being, but that’s where you’ll stop. … I’m emotionally busy right now.”

Coste – who played for the 1998 Redhawks team that won the franchise’s first Northern League championship – was filled with emotion after the postgame. During the regular season, the Fargo South graduate lost time dealing with neurological issues in his back and lower body. As the season progressed and then ended with the championship, Coste’s health improved.

“Everything you put into it ends up like this, the emotions get to you and that’s a good thing,” Coste said. “For every team at any level, you fight for it, but still to achieve it you have to handle your emotions for the most part. … My feelings had nothing to do with me personally It had everything to do with how last year ended, how this year’s team was made and how it all came together throughout the season.

“It was all about what this organization was able to build, what the players were able to achieve, then of course the amazing Game 5, which will go down in league history. I don’t know how to play Game 5 in this league.” Can be topped.”

The Redhawks lost to the Kansas City Monarchs in the previous season’s Championship Series. The FM defeated the Monarchs in the West Division Championship Series later this season, beating Milwaukee to win the league title. The RedHawks had a 5–0 record in games this post season in which they suffered elimination. They lost Game 1 of the three playoff series they won, including the championship.


FM Redhawks third baseman Leobaldo Pina delivers a game-winning hit against Milwaukee for the Miles Wolfe Cup Baseball Championship on Thursday, September 22, 2022 at Newman Outdoor Field.

Michael Vosberg/The Forum

“It was so hard to win in this environment,” Bittiger said. “For Kansas City to beat, that was a big hurdle.”

Third baseman Leo Pina – in his fifth season with the Redhawks – proved to be a Game 5 hero. His RBI single in the 10th inning scored the goal of experienced catcher Christian Correa from second base, setting up a wild on-field celebration and sending the crowd into frenzy.

“He is now an all-time great, he is now a Redhawks all-time great,” Bittiger said. “He’s been a stable and a great kid too.”

Pina was named Most Valuable Player for the Championship Series, capping a stellar postseason. Pina batted .347 (17 off 49) in 11 playoff games with seven doubles, two triples and six RBIs to go with a superb defense at third base.

Coste said Pina has established himself as one of the best players in the history of the franchise. The Redhawks’ inaugural season was in 1996.

The Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks celebrate the defeat of Milwaukee for the Miles Wolfe Cup Baseball Championship at Newman Outdoor Field on Thursday, September 22, 2022.

Michael Vosberg/The Forum

“Now you have Leo Pina right there with (shortstop) Zach Penprez and (center fielder) Joe Mathis,” Coste said. “He is about as redhawk of a player as this organization has ever done.”

Fargo South graduate Alex Dubord closed the door for the Redhawks Thursday night. The team’s right-hand close and American Association Relief Pitcher of the Year played three scoreless, hitless innings to secure the win against the Milkmen.

“You can’t even calculate the value of what he’s meant to us over the past two years,” Coste said of DuBord, who made 23 saves during the regular season. “He showed it in Game 5. It’s awesome he’s a local guy, but it’s even better that he’s really good and he’s a great teammate. He proved himself as the relief pitcher of the year. “

After Game 5, Dubord stated that he would not be dropped from the game once he entered the eighth inning.

“I don’t want to be selfish, but once again this is my hometown and I wanted it more than anything I could have imagined,” DuBord said. “So I (Costé) said when I came out, I got the rest of the game, win or lose.”

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