July 25, 2017 - Florida State League (FSL) - Dunedin Blue Jays
The Dunedin Blue Jays (18-13) completed a four-game sweep of the Lakeland Flying Tigers (14-13) with a 12-4 win on Monday night at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium. The win is Dunedin's sixth straight and improves their home win-loss record in the season's second half to 13-2, the best in the Florida State League. With tonight's victory, the Blue Jays have sole possession of second place in the North, trailing the Tampa Yankees, who also have won six straight, by 1.5 games.
RHP Jordan Romano started for the Blue Jays on the mound, coming off a strong start his last time out against Clearwater on July 19 (5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 7 K), but didn't appear at his best tonight. Romano went 4.0 innings and allowed six hits, two runs, walked three, and struck out a pair.
The Blue Jays offense provided no shortage of run support behind Romano.
After Lakeland took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first, LF Connor Panas tied the game in the second inning with a towering opposite field home run. Lakeland took the lead back in the top of the third with a single run, but it was short-lived.
The Blue Jays scored five times in the bottom of the third, using three hits, three walks, and a fielding error by Lakeland to break the game open. CF D.J. Davis led off the inning with a single. SS Bo Bichette and 2B Cavan Biggio followed with walks to load the bases. With one out, DH Max Pentecost hit a routine ground ball to third base that snuck under the glove of Lakeland 3B Josh Lester allowing two runs to score.
After the error, 1B Juan Kelly walked and Panas singled up the middle to plate Biggio. A ground out by RF Eduard Pinto scored Pentecost and a single by C Andres Sotillo brought home Kelly with the fifth run of the inning.
The Blue Jays offense went into cruise control after the big inning, adding three more runs in the sixth and another three in the eighth.
Playing in his first game with Dunedin, Sotillo finished 3-4 with an RBI and two runs scored. Davis had two hits, including a double, and three runs scored. Kelly and Panas each had two hits and eight different Blue Jays had at least one hit in the game.
LHP Alonzo Gonzalez picked up his second win of the season in relief of Romano, throwing 2.0 scoreless innings. LHP Kirby Snead and RHP Jackson McClelland combined to throw the game's final three innings for Dunedin.
Over the course of their six-game win streak, the Blue Jays have outscored opponents 32-14. During the streak the Dunedin pitching staff has thrown three shutouts while Connor Panas has anchored the offense, hitting .381 with three home runs and six runs batted in.
Dunedin heads to Charlotte tomorrow to begin a four-game road series with the Stone Crabs, who are 15-15 in the season's second half.