The Stone Crabs dropped the first game of the series against the Bradenton Marauders 7-6 on Tuesday night at McKechnie Field. The narrow loss dropped the Stone Crabs to 4 1/2 games behind Bradenton in the standings.
The Stone Crabs jumped out to an early lead in the second inning. Tyler Bortnick singled to right to lead off the inning. Bortnick then stole second and moved to third on a single by Anthony Scelfo. Jake Jefferies drove home the first run of the game with an RBI double to score Bortnick and move Scelfo to third. Matt Hall then reached on a fielders choice, losing Scelfo at a play at the plate. Jefferies scored on a sac fly by Dustin Biell followed by an RBI single by Ty Morrison to give the Stone Crabs a 3-0 lead.
Bradenton answered with a three run inning of their own in the bottom half of the second to tie the game. The Marauders loaded the bases via a double and two walks. Kelson Brown then singled home the first run of the inning. Then back to back sac flies by Benji Gonzalez and Robbie Grossman to tie the game 3-3.
The game remained tied until the fifth when the Stone Crabs struck for three more runs. Mark Thomas reached on an error to get things going. Bortnick later drove home Thomas with an RBI double to center. Bortnick scored on a line drive by Scelfo for the second run of the inning. Jefferies followed with a solo home run to push across the third run of the inning and give the Stone Crabs a 6-3 lead.
The Stone Crabs found themselves in a jam in the bottom of the fifth as the Marauders loaded the bases once again. But Kirby Yates came through with three consecutive strikeouts to end the threat and keep the Stone Crabs ahead by three runs.
The Marauder picked up a run in the sixth inning. Benji Gonzalez drew a two out walk to put a runner on the bases. He would later score on an RBI single by Aldaberto Santos to pull within two runs of the lead 6-4.
But it was the bottom of the eighth that doomed the Stone Crabs. The Marauders opened up the inning with back to back walks to Grossman and Santos. Both runners would score on an RBI single by Elevys Gonzalez to tie the game. Elevys Gonzalez would later score the go ahead run on an RBI single by Evan Chamber to give the Marauders a 7-6 lead.
The Stone Crabs stranded runners in scoring position in the ninth inning as they fell to the Marauders 7-6 in a hard fought contest.
Josh Satow was charged with the loss. Brian Leach was the winner for Bradenton.
The series resumes on Wednesday night at Charlotte Sports Park. Jake Thompson will face off against Tyler Waldron for Bradenton.
- Ty Morrison (CF): 2 for 5 with an RBI.
- Reid Fronk (RF): 0 for 5.
- Mike Sheridan (1B): 1 for 4 with a double.
- Mark Thomas (C): 1 for 5 with a run scored.
- Tyler Bortnick (2B): 3 for 3 with a double, 2 walks and 2 run scored.
- Anthony Scelfo (3B): 2 for 5 with an RBI.
- Jake Jefferies (DH): 2 for 4 with a home run and 2 RBI’s.
- Matt Hall (SS): 1 for 4 with a double.
- Dustin Biell (LF): 0 for 3 with an RBI.
- Alex Koronis: 3 runs on 4 hits with 5 strikeouts and 3 walks in 4 innings.
- Kirby Yates: 1 run on 2 hits with 4 walks and 3 strikeouts in 2 innings.
- Adam Liberatore: 2 runs on 3 walks and a strikeout in 1 inning.
- Josh Satow (Blown Save, 4) (Loss, 4-5): 1 unearned run on 2 hits and a walk in an inning pitched.