Offense Stymied in Series Opener against Marauders
BRADENTON, Fla. - The Clearwater Threshers continued to look for answers on offense after being shutout, 8-0, to the Bradenton Marauders on Tuesday night at LECOM Park. The whitewash was the sixth of July suffered by Clearwater, who's scoreless-inning drought reached 25 innings in the series opener.
Clearwater (50-44, 14-14) had an opportunity to grab an early lead against Aaron Shortidge (4-4) after Nick Maton singled and Matt Vierling doubled with two outs to put two runners in scoring position, but Rodolfo Duran popped out to first to end the threat for the visitors.
The road team had a chance to cut a 2-0 deficit in half in the third after Simon Muzziotti started the frame with a single, but the runner was left stranded at second after a Jhailyn Ortiz pop out, a Maton ground out to advance Muzziotti, and a ground out from Vierling.
The Threshers finished the night 0-for-2 with runners in scoring position, and have failed to drive a man home with a hit in their last 17 attempts. The last batted ball to register a run with a man in scoring position was a Luke Miller sacrifice fly with the bases loaded in the fourth inning against the Florida Fire Frogs in the first game of a doubleheader on Saturday, July 13.
Julian Garcia (6-6) fired in his fourth consecutive quality start in the losing effort. The right-hander allowed two solo home runs in the second inning off the bats of Cal Mitchell and Dylan Bustby. The starter allowed an unearned run in the fourth to create a 3-0 deficit.
Garcia finished the night with three runs allowed - two earned - across six stanzas while walking one and setting down three on strikes.
Bradenton (50-43, 14-13) broke the game open with a five-run eight that was capped off by a grand slam by Lucas Tancas.
The Threshers will attempt to unleash the bats in game two of the three-game set on Tuesday morning at LECOM Park. RHP Connor Seabold (1-0, 2.25) makes his first start at the Advanced-A level for Clearwater against RH Nick Economos (4-3, 2.10). First pitch is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. with coverage beginning at 10:15 a.m. with Threshers Live! The Pregame Show on threshersbaseball.com.
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