Late Rally Falls Short in 4-2 Loss to Threshers
VIERA, Fla. -The Brevard County Manatees brought the winning run to the plate in the bottom of the ninth, but were unable complete the comeback as they fell to the Clearwater Threshers, 4-2 at Space Coast Stadium on Tuesday afternoon.
AfterOrlando ArciaandTyrone Taylorwere retired to start the frame,Michael Reeddrew a walk to start the rally.Victor Roachewould single to bringGarrett Cooper, who represented the tying run, to the plate. Cooper lined a single to left to score Reed and pull the Manatees (16-15) within two runs.
WithAlfredo Rodriguezcoming to the plate, Threshers manager Nelson Prada decided to call upon right-handed reliever Colton Murray, who picked up his first save of the year a night ago. Rodriguez smoked a line drive on the first pitch he saw, but it was right at Brian Pointer who made the play in right field to end the game.
The game was closely contested throughout as the Manatees'Tyler Wagner(3-1, 2.03 ERA) and the Threshers' Colin Kleven were both stellar in their respective starts.
Wagner surrendered just two runs on six hits and one walk, over a season-high seven innings.
Kleven countered Wagner every step of the way to put together his best start of 2014, as he allowed one run on six hits and struck out two without walking a batter.
The Threshers (7-22) grabbed the first lead of the game in the top of the second. Art Charles started the inning with a double to right center and advanced to third on a single by Gabriel Lino.
With one out, Pointer hit a fly ball to left field. Lino was gunned out by Roache trying to tag up to second for the final out of the inning. However, Charles was able to race home from third before the runner was tagged out, giving Clearwater a 1-0 lead.
The Manatees came back to tie it up in the sixth inning. Back-to-back singles byNathan Orfand Arcia put runners on the corners for Taylor. The center fielder hit a tailor-made, double play ball to short, but was able to beat the relay throw to first. Orf came home to score and tie the game at one.
Clearwater grabbed the lead for good a half inning later. With Lino at third and two outs, Anthony Phillips snuck a ground ball into center field, which scored the runner from third base to make it 2-1.
The Threshers padded their lead in the ninth. After Chad Carman reached on an error, Pointer lined a ball off the bottom of the foul pole in right field and back into play. Home plate umpire Rich Gunton did not hesitate as he raced down the first base line to signal a home run.
Brevard County managerJoe Ayraultcame out to dispute the call, seeing as it might have bounced off the top of the wall, but to no avail as the two-run shot extended the Threshers lead to 4-1.
The Manatees will look to get back on track against their I-95 rivals, the Daytona Cubs (10-19), on Wednesday night at Radiology Associates Field at Jackie Robinson Ballpark.
Damien Magnifico(1-2, 3.10) will get the start for Brevard County against Cubs left-hander Rob Zastryzny (1-2, 8.46). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
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