Manatees Squander Chances in 5-3 Loss to Clearwater
VIERA, Fla. - Harold Martinez was a thorn in the side of the Brevard County Manatees on Monday night, as the Clearwater Threshers' third baseman drove home three runs, including the go-ahead single in the fifth inning, as the Manatees fell 5-3 to the Threshers.
The 'Tees and Threshers were tied 2-2 going into the fifth, but Clearwater pieced together a quick rally. Pete Lavin hit a one-out double and Martinez delivered with a single to left field to put the Threshers on top. Gabriel Lino came through later in the inning with an RBI knock to score Martinez and give Clearwater a 4-2 advantage.
Those four runs came off of Brevard's Hobbs Johnson (2-4, 3.13 ERA), who went just 4.2 innings and allowed seven hits, while walking one and striking out five.
Clearwater (6-22) added another run in the sixth, as well. Nick Ferdinand tripled to begin the frame and Anthony Phillips drove him in with an RBI single.
Brevard County (16-14) let its best chances slip away early. The 'Tees were gifted six walks by Clearwater's starter Ethan Stewart (2-2, 3.23 ERA). Out of those walks, however Brevard only tallied three runs as the 'Tees also left 11 men on base in the loss.
A leadoff walk in the first inning helped the Manatees get on the board. Already trailing 2-0, Nathan Orf worked a free pass and went from first to third when Orlando Arcia singled. Tyrone Taylor came up next and grounded out to third base, but Orf scored the Manatees' first run.
Brevard scored again in the third inning after Taylor drew a one-out walk. Taylor moved up to third with two outs on a single by Cameron Garfield and scored when a ground ball by Victor Roache was misplayed by Martinez at third.
The Manatees' final run came in the fifth inning after Taylor led off the inning with his Minor League Baseball-leading 15th double of the year. After Roache worked a two-out walk, Garrett Cooper produced an RBI single.
Cooper's single pulled the Manatees within one run at 4-3, but that was all they could manage. Jordan Guth and Colton Murray closed out the win for Clearwater with four scoreless innings.
Guth worked three innings, struck out one and only allowed one hit. Murray entered the game in the ninth and got into some troubl, but was able to escape.
Orf began the inning with a walk, but was erased when Arcia hit into a fielder's choice that Clearwater could not turn into a double play. With Arcia on first, Taylor singled to put the tying runner on base with men on first and second.
Murray dug deep and struck out Roache, but Arcia and Taylor pulled off a double steal. At this point, the tying run was in scoring position with two outs, but Murray got Garfield to fly out to right field to end the game.
The Manatees and Threshers meet bright and early on Tuesday for a 10:35 a.m. start at Space Coast Stadium to close out their three-game series. Brevard County's Tyler Wagner (3-0, 1.91) is due to start against Clearwater's Colin Kleven (0-3, 7.58).
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