'Tees late rally falls short in 3-2 loss to Bradenton
BRADENTON, Fla. - Down three runs going to the ninth, the Brevard County Manatees rallied to pull within one. However, they could not complete the comeback, as the Bradenton Marauders emerged victorious, 3-2 on Friday night at McKechnie Field.
With the Manatees (19-18 second half, 55-48 overall) trailing 3-0, Mike Garza reached on a walk and Brandon Macias got on board with a single in the top of the ninth. With runners on the corners, Nathan Orf stepped to the plate with two down. On a 1-0 pitch from side-arming left-hander Josh Smith, Orf cranked a ball down the right field line.
Garza scored easily from third and Macias chugged home from first. Orf was in at second with a two-run double to trim the Marauders (25-15, 60-49) lead to 3-2.
The next batter, Orlando Arcia, came up with a chance to deliver the game-tying blow, but could not connect on the big base-hit. After working the count full, Arcia struck out swinging against Smith to end the ballgame.
Despite the loss, the two runs in the ninth snapped two big streaks for either side. Orf's two-run base knock snapped the 'Tees 28-plus scoreless inning streak, which started on Tuesday night against Jupiter. In the process, Bradenton's 19-inning scoreless streak was halted, as well.
Another big streak came to the end in the final frame too. Macias' single with Garza at second ended a streak of 27-consecutive outs with runners in scoring position for Brevard County.
The Marauders gave themselves a cushion early, scoring all three of their runs in the first two innings.
Manatees' starter Austin Ross (7-5, 3.76 ERA) retired the first two batters he faced, but Bradenton rallied. Three straight singles from Jose Osuna, Jordan Steranka and Eric Wood brought home a run to give the Marauders the early lead, 1-0.
Then Ross began to struggle with his control. Back-to-back walks to Justin Howard and Jin-De Jhang forced home another run to put Bradenton up 2-0.
In the second, the Marauders put runners at first courtesy of a walk to Raul Fortunato and single by Max Moroff. With one out, Osuna lofted a towering, high fly ball to left field.
With the wind blowing out to right, the ball died at the warning track. Victor Roache made the catch, but Fortunato tagged and scored from third to extend the Bradenton lead to three.
Ross settled down after that, as he finished his night with three straight scoreless innings. The former LSU Tiger allowed just two more baserunners, as he took his fourth consecutive loss. Ross finished the evening with three runs allowed on five hits. He walked four and struck out four.
Despite a high pitch count, Marauders starter and ace Tyler Glasnow (8-5, 1.63) dominated over six innings. The top prospect no-hit the 'Tees into the fifth, but did have issues with his location.
Glasnow allowed just two hits, but walked four. He struck out five, as he recorded his eighth win of the year. The right-hander lowered his ERA to 1.63, good for second-best in the league behind Brevard's Tyler Wagner (10-4, 1.53).
Wagner will take the mound tomorrow to try and put an end to the Manatees three-game losing streak. First pitch at McKechnie Field is slated for 6:30 p.m. Jason Creasy (6-6, 3.62) will get the start for Bradenton and try to be the first pitcher to out duel Wagner since June 3.
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