Monday, April 14, 2008

Blue Jays slide by Miracle

News Press blogger Ed Pelegrino with his son, Owen.

Dunedin 5 at Fort Myers 4

W: E. Rodriguez (1-0, 0.00); L: R. Delaney (0-1, 0.00); SV: Z. Dials (4)
HR: FTM: J. Woodard (2).

The Miracle managed to take a 4-1 lead going into the sixth inning, but Dunedin was able to whittle it away, eventually finding the game winning run in the 9th helped in part on a wild pitch by Miracle closer Rob Delaney.

Alex Burnett took the start for the home town team, allowing a triple to Chris Emanuele in the first which give Dunedin the early lead when Emanuele came home on a Travis Snider ground out.

Dunedin's Gustavo Chacin would hold Fort Myers scoreless in the first, but a triple by Danny Santiesteban and a walk by Allan de San Miguel set the stage for a run. Toby Gardenhire singled at the bottom of the order to bring in the speedy Santiesteban. A Brian Dinkelman double saw de San Miguel across the plate, but a questional call by the umpire saw Gardenhire out at home on the throw to the plate.

Still it gave the lead to the Miracle, who would extended it in the third. With two outs, a slimmed down Johnny Woodard singled and stole 2nd base. Wilson Ramos' double brought Woodard in, but in what seemed like a repeat of the prior inning, Ramos was called out at home when he tried to reach on a Rene Tosoni single.

After a scoreless fourth inning, Woodard would hit his second home run of the season into the wind over the right field wall.

That would be it for the Miracle though, as Armando Benitez replace Chacin on the mound and then Benitz left almost immediately with an injured leg. Submariner Conner Falkenbach came into the game and would hold the Miracle to only 1 hit through 2.1 innings.

Burnett started the sixth but a double to Travis Snider and a walk to Brian Dopirak saw Jose Lugo come into the game. After striking out Cory Patton, Lugo allowed a single at J.P. Arencibia to bring in Snider, cutting the Miracle lead in half.

The 7th inning was scoreless, but Dunedin opened with a pair of singles and a run in the eighth which saw Fort Myers turn to ace closer Robert Dalaney. However, Dopirak greeted Delaney with a double, to bring in Snider, tying up the game.

The Miracle could find no offense though in the bottom of the stanza against the Blue Jay's Edward Rodriguez, recording a ground out and a pair of fly outs.

Luis Sanchez got on base for the Jays on a fielding error by Toby Gardenhire. He moved to 2nd on Sean Shoffit's ground out, and to 3rd on Delaney's wild pitch. A single by Chris Emanuele gave the Jays the go ahead run.

With 2 outs in the ninth, hopes were briefly raised when Edward Ovalle singled, but Valencia ground into a force out and the game was finished with the Jays on top.

Woodard and Tosoni were both 2-for-4 in the game, Woodard with 2 runs. Dinkelman and Valencia were both 2-for-5.

Lugo would be charged with 2 runs on 3 hits while striking out 2 in 1.2 innings, jumping his ERA up to 10.13. Delaney still has not give up an earned run this year, despite being hit with the blown save and the loss.

The series concludes on Sunday on Mascot Mania Day as Fort Myers mascot Miss A-Miracle celebrates her 4th birthday. Cole Devries will be making the start for the Miracle.

News Press
NP Notebook: Jeff Smith

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