The Stone Crabs split Tuesday evening’s doubleheader against the St Lucie Mets at Tradition Field. A pair of two run innings helped lift the Stone Crabs to a 4-2 victory in game one. But in game two, the Stone Crabs couldn’t overcome an early deficit in the 8-6 defeat.
The Stone Crabs jumped out to an early lead in game one of the doubleheader. Casey Gillaspie led off the second inning with a triple to center. He wouldn’t stay on third long, scoring on a double by Granden Goetzman. Goetzman later scored on a single by Armando Araiza to give the Stone Crabs a 2-0 lead.
The Mets tied the game in the bottom of the fifth inning. Brent Honeywell surrendered back to back walks to Jeff McNeil and Victor Cruzado to put runners on the bases for the Mets. An RBI double by Matt Oberste and a ground ball by Phillip Evans would score both runners to tie the game.
The Stone Crabs regained the lead in the sixth inning. Araiza got things going with a double to left. He then scored on a single by Yoel Araujo. Araujo would later score on a ground ball by Jace Conrad to put the Stone Crabs in front 4-2.
St Lucie threatened in the bottom of the seventh but Mike Franco closed the door to win game one for the Stone Crabs 4-2.
Franco was the winner and Kelly Secrest suffered the loss for St Lucie.
The St Lucie offense came out swinging in the second game, jumping out to a 4-0 lead in the first inning. A walk, an error and few base hits powered the Mets offense with Cruzado, Evans and Colton Plaia collecting RBI’s to give the Mets a 4-0 advantage.
The Mets added three more runs in the second inning. An RBI single by Oberste, Evans and Maikis De La Cruz increased the lead to 7-0.
The Stone Crabs put a dent in the lead with a five run fourth inning. They quickly went to work, opening up the inning with three straight hits. Braxton Lee and Mike Marjama singled to put runners on the bases. Then an RBI single by Gillaspie plated Lee for the first run of the game for the Stone Crabs. A double by Maxx Tissenbaum scored Marjama and moved Gillaspie to third. Gillaspie then scored on a single by Justin Williams. Two more runs would come later on the inning on a ground ball by Araujo to pull the Stone Crabs to within two runs of the lead, 7-5.
The Stone Crabs inched closer in the fifth. Marjama reached on a fielder’s followed by Gillaspie and Tissenbaum reaching on singles to load the bases. A wild pitch would score Marjama. But the Stone Crabs stranded the tying and go-ahead run on the bases as they trailed 7-6.
The Mets collected an insurance run in the sixth inning on ground ball by Oberste to make it 8-6.
The Stone Crabs were retired in order in the seventh as they fell 8-6.
Chih-Wei Hu suffered the loss in game two. Jimmy Duffy was the winning pitcher and Robert Coles got the save for St Lucie.
The Stone Crabs will be off on Wednesday before beginning their final series of the regular season on Thursday night against the Fort Myers Miracle.