Florida Hits on All Cylinders in Series Victory over Daytona
DAYTONA, Fla. - Everything clicked for the Florida Fire Frogs on Thursday night, as the visitors came away with an emphatic, 11-1 victory over the Daytona Tortugas at Jackie Robinson ballpark in the rubber match of the five-game series. The matchup concluded the 2018 series between the two clubs, with Florida taking five of the 18 contests.
Kurt Hoekstra (3x5, 2 R, HR, RBI) and Isranel Wilson (3x5, 3 R, HR, RBI) played "long ball" to give Florida a 2-0 advantage after the fourth. Hoekstra deposited a 407 ft. blast over the wall in right in the second for his first home run with the Fire Frogs, and Wilson's bomb in the fourth provided an insurance run to stretch the lead to two.
The two-run cushion was plenty of room for Tucker Davidson (6-6) to work with on the mound, as the Atlanta Braves' 21st-ranked prospect (MLB.com) no-hit Daytona (12-9,49-38) through six frames. The lefty had a perfect-game bid going into the fifth inning, but lost it with two outs and back-to-back walks to Ibandel Isabel and Stuart Fairchild.
The 23-year-old walked Taylor Trammel to start the seventh inning, and allowed consecutive singles to Tyler Stephenson and Bruce Yari to end the no hitter and shutout. The Amarillo, Texas native tied a career-high with eight strikeouts in the winning effort, but allowed just the one run on two hits and three walks.
Josh Graham and Brandon White recorded the final nine outs of the contest without allowing a base runner. Graham punched out one, while White recorded two in the final frame to complete the 10-run victory.
Florida (10-11, 39-48) added two insurance runs in the seventh inning on Kevin Josephina's (4x5, 4 RBI) two-run single, and broke the game open with two more runs in the eighth, and put the hammer down with a five-spot in the ninth.
The Fire Frogs finished the night with a season-high, 19 hits, with the combination of Hoekstra, Wilson, Jordan Rodgers (3x5, 2 R, 2B) and Josephina picking up 13 of the knocks from the bottom four of the lineup.
Florida returns home to Osceola County Stadium for game one of a three-game weekend set against the Clearwater Threshers beginning Friday night. RHP Ian Anderson (2-5, 2.96) toes the rubber for the Fire Frogs against LHP McKenzie Mills (0-3, 3.79) for the Threshers. First pitch is schedule for 6:31 p.m., with coverage starting at 6:15 p.m. on the Florida Fire Frogs Broadcasting Network.
There are a slew of promotions for the series opener at the ballpark. Join the Fire Frogs as they transform into Los Coquis to celebrate the rich Latin culture in central Florida and baseball. The series opener also features Bark in the Park and Charity Poker Night, as well as Free Beer Friday, where fans 21-and-older can enjoy free beer from first pitch until Clearwater scores.
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