Threshers Come up Short in Series Opener
CLEARWATER -- The Clearwater Threshers dropped the series opener to the Tampa Yankees 7-6 Tuesday night at Bright House Field.
Colin Kleven made his second start of the season for the Threshers after lasting just four innings in his previous outing on Opening Night at Dunedin. Kleven went five innings and allowed six runs on 10 hits while walking one and striking out two.
After retiring Tampa 1-2-3 in the first inning, Kleven (0-2) allowed a solo homerun to left field off the bat of Peter O' Brien to put the Yankees up, 1-0.
Manny Banuelos was on the mound for Tampa and worked three innings of shutout baseball before giving way to Brett Gerritse. In his Yankee debut, Gerritse (1-0) worked four innings and gave up four runs, one earned, on five hits while striking out four Threshers and walking just one to pick up the win.
Tampa (2-3) added three more runs over the third and fourth innings, before Eric Jagielo gave the Yankees a 6-0 lead when he hit a two-run homerun to right for his second of the year.
Clearwater (1-4) cut the lead to 6-3 with two outs in the fifth after an error by Yankees' shortstop Cito Culver. The miscue allowed Freddy Galvis, who is with the Threshers on a rehab stint, to score from third. Art Charles followed that up with a two-run homerun to right-center for his first hit of the 2014 season.
Mike Adams, Dan Child, and Jordan Guth combined for four innings out of the bullpen. The trio allowed just three hits and an earned run while striking out three without surrendering a walk.
The Threshers were in need of a comeback in the ninth, down 7-4 with the Yankees' Tyler Webb on to close it out.
Harold Martinez led off the inning by striking out, but Clearwater was able to rally after that. Charles singled and Nick Ferdinand followed that with a walk to put runners at first and second with one out. Charles finished the game 2-for-5 with two runs and two RBI.
Justin Parr lined out to center for the second out, which left Casey Serna as the Threshers' last chance. Serna delivered a double down the left field line to plate both Charles and Ferdinand to trim the score to 7-6. Willie Carmona pinch hit, but grounded out to short to end the game.
The Yankees and Threshers are back at it in a Wednesday afternoon matinee. It will be a matchup of southpaws with Dietrich Enns going for Tampa and Ethan Stewart starting for Clearwater. First pitch from Bright House Field is set for 1 p.m. The game can be heard online on threshersbaseball.com beginning at 12:45 p.m.
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