Manatees Fall 2-1 to Daytona on Walk-Off Single
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - After a tightly contested battle with their I-95 rivals, Willson Contreras delivered the big base-hit as Brevard County Manatees fell victim to a 2-1, walk-off victory by the Daytona Cubs on Sunday evening at Jackie Robinson Ballpark and were subsequently swept in the four-game set.
After the first two batters of the ninth inning were retired, Jeimer Candelario snuck a ground ball past the glove of first baseman Michael Garza and down the right field line for a double. Manatees' reliever Tommy Toledo proceeded to intentionally walk Rock Shoulders to bring Contreras to the dish.
The catcher had struggled mightily to that point. Contreras committed an error and a passed ball defensively, as well as striking out twice and grounding into a big double play at the plate.
On the cusp of his third strike out, Contreras smacked a 0-2 pitch from Toledo into center field. Tyrone Taylor made an accurate throw to the plate, but Cameron Garfield's tag was just a hair late as Candelario scored the winning run.
The walk-off loss over shadowed a strong pitching performance by both clubs, most notably starters Tayler Scott (2-2, 3.46) of Daytona and Jed Bradley (3-1, 3.42) of Brevard County.
Bradley was spot on for his fourth consecutive outing, but did not factor into the decision. The lefty struck out a career-high nine batters over five innings of work, while allowing one run on three hits and three walks.
Scott, who carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning in his prior start against Brevard (11-12), was impressive again, but did not get a decision as well. The Cubs' right-hander also allowed one run on four hits, walked three and struck out four in six innings.
Daytona (9-14) picked up the first run of the ball game off Bradley in the bottom of the fourth. Dan Vogelbach led off the frame with a walk and then stole his first base of the year to get into scoring position. With one out, Candelario singled back up the middle to score Vogelbach and put the Cubs up 1-0.
Brevard would rally right back, however, to tie the game in the next half-inning. Alfredo Rodriguez led off with an infield single to short and then advanced to third on a one-out double to left by Brandon Macias. Nathan Orf brought home Rodriguez with a sacrifice fly to deep center to knot the game up at one.
The 'Tees had their fair share of opportunities to grab the lead, but failed to do so as they stranded ten runners on base. Their best shot came in the seventh, when Garza reached on an error and Macias singled to start the inning. Orf would sacrifice the runners to second and third, but they would not advance any further.
Cubs' reliever Michael Jensen - who would go on to pick up the win - struck out Orlando Arcia and forced Taylor to ground out to end the frame. Jensen was stellar in relief of Scott, as he threw three shutout innings and allowed just two hits while striking out four without walking a hitter.
Austin Ross was equally impressive out of the bullpen for the Manatees. The former LSU Tiger turned in his best outing of the season, by also throwing three scoreless innings. He surrendered just two hits and one walk while striking out three.
Brevard County will look to end their five-game skid as they head to Clearwater on Monday, to start a three-game series with the Threshers (5-18) at Bright House Field. The 'Tees will send Jorge Lopez (1-2, 4.41) to the hill for his fifth start of the season. The Threshers will counter with right-hander Jeb Stefan (1-1, 6.75). First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.
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Florida State League Stories from April 27, 2014
- Manatees Fall 2-1 to Daytona on Walk-Off Single - Brevard County Manatees
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- Nunez Bounces Back, Threshers Fall 5-4 - Clearwater Threshers