Llovera Deals, Threshers Split Doubleheader
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Mauricio Llovera hurled a season-high seven innings in a complete game, as the Threshers split a doubleheader in the last home game of the regular season on Sunday afternoon, walking off 3-2 in game one before dropping the second game, 3-2 in nine innings.
Llovera (7-7) dazzled in the start in game one for Clearwater. He spun a seven-inning complete game for the Threshers, giving up two runs on four hits, permitting just one walk and striking out a career-high 11.
Down to the last seven games in the regular season, Clearwater (72-57) (40-22) remains in first place in the FSL North. The Threshers are four games ahead of the Lakeland Flying Tigers.
After rain postponed Saturday night's contest, the two second half leaders competed in a doubleheader on Sunday.
Charlotte (70-58) (36-25) got on the scoreboard swiftly in game one. Vidal Brujan jumped on the first pitch of the ballgame and sent a solo shot onto the berm in right for a speedy 1-0 lead, and Jake Fraley followed suit attacking a first-pitch fastball for a home run, boosting the Stone Crabs to 2-0.
The Threshers got a run back in the third. Brian Mims drew a leadoff walk and Arquimedes Gamboa rolled a single through to center to put two men on with two outs.
Mickey Moniak stepped up to the plate and delivered an RBI double to cut the deficit 2-1.
Clearwater rallied to walk off in the seven-inning contest. Back-to-back walks began the inning for the Threshers, and Moniak ripped his second RBI double of the ballgame to knot it up, 2-2.
After the Stone Crabs intentionally walked Luke Williams, Kyle Martin lined a bases-loaded RBI single through the right side to walk it off, 3-2.
Charlotte again struck first in the second game of the doubleheader. Brujan led things off with a fly ball that fell into left for a base hit, and Tristan Gray reached base with a ground ball through the right side. Gray crossed the plate on a Carl Chester fly ball single to give Charlotte the 1-0 advantage.
The Threshers evened the score in the fourth. Three straight singles loaded the bases for Clearwater with just one out, and Daniel Brito shot a sacrifice fly out to center field to send Cumana across the plate and tie the game at one apiece.
Game two went into two extra innings before the final was decided.
In the eighth, the Stone Crabs cashed in on the free runner with a ground out and a sac fly to put them ahead 2-1.
Clearwater answered with a run of their own, provided by game-one hero Martin.
A balk started off the ninth inning for the Stone Crabs to advance the free runner down to third, and he scored on a wild pitch to push Charlotte ahead, 3-2.
Bailey Falter permitted just one run on seven hits and one walk while striking out one in five innings in the no-decision.
Jakob Hernandez and Addison Russ combined for a scoreless pair of innings, and Trevor Bettencourt suffered the loss despite allowing no hits. He was charged with two unearned runs Ewhile striking out four in two innings of relief.
Clearwater is on the road for the remainder of the regular season. Their first stop is Jupiter for a four-game series. Ramon Rosso (5-2) takes the hill for the Threshers against Josh Roeder (6-4) for the Hammerheads with the first pitch set for 6:30 p.m. Kirsten Karbach will be on the call for the Threshers Broadcast Network with the pregame show beginning at 6:15 p.m.
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