The second half looked like it was going to start on a winning note, but a ninth inning collapse lead to a 2-1 loss on Thursday night at Charlotte Sports Park.
The Stone Crabs got on the board first by scoring in the bottom of the third. Pat Blair doubled to center and then later scored on a ground ball by Grady Sizemore to give the Stone Crabs a 1-0 lead.
The one run lead held until the ninth thanks to a commanding performance on the mound by Chris Kirsch. Kirsch tossed eighth scorless innings, at one time retiring ten straight hitter before turning the game over to the bullpen in the ninth.
Fort Myers struck in the top of the ninth. Engelb Vielma drew a walk to open up the inning. He later scored on a triple by Alex Swim to tie the game. Swim would eventually score on a wild pitch to give the Miracle a 2-1 lead.
The Stone Crabs tried to tie the game in the ninth, putting the tying runner on the passes. But they failed to get the runner home and took a 2-1 loss.
Brad Schreiber suffered the loss for the Stone Crabs. Corey Williams was the winning pitcher for Fort Myers and DJ Johnson earned the save.
The series shift to Fort Myers for Friday’s series finale. Steve Ascher (5-0, 1.56) will get the start against Chih-Wei Hu (4-1, 2.17).
- Grady Sizemore (DH): 0 for 4
- Tim Beckham (2B): 0 for 3
- Kean Wong (2B): 0 for 1
- Willy Adames (SS): 1 for 4
- Granden Goetzman (LF): 1 for 4
- Marty Gantt (RF): 0 for 4
- Maxx Tissenbaum (C): 1 for 4
- Mike Marjama (1B): 1 for 3
- Pat Blair (3B): 1 for 3 with a double and a run scored
- Braxton Lee (CF): 1 for 3
- Chris Kirsch: 8 scoreless innings with 2 hits, 5 strikeouts and a walk
- Brad Schreiber (Loss, 0-2): 2 runs, 1 earned on 1 hit and 2 walks with a strikeout in 2/3 inning
- Josh Kimborowicz: 1/3 scoreless inning with a strikeout