Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Miracle Rally past Reds late

Brandon Roberts

Sarasota 2 at Fort Myers 3

W: J. Lugo (2-4, 4.19); L: R. Medina (2-7, 3.33)
HR: FTM: W. Ramos (12).

Brandon Roberts line drive out to center plated Danny Berg for the game winning run in the bottom of the 9th inning, a nice win in a game that, for a long time, looked like it might see the Fort Myers Miracle shut out.

Jose Castro doubled in the top of the first off Deolis Guerra and Juan Francisco's line drive to left plated him to put the Sarasota Reds on the board.

Deolis Guerra would limit the Reds to that lone run on six hits over five innings, but he'd walk six and fan only one. Scott Carroll on the other hand blanked Miracle, scattering six hits a walk over six innings while fanning two.

The Miracle finally found some action in the bottom of the 7th, with Joseph Krebs taking over the mound for Carroll. He'd give up a home run to Wilson Ramos. The Venezuelan catcher launched his 12th home run of the season over the center field wall to finally put the the Miracle on the board.

Logan Parker doubled off Carlos Gutierrez in the top of the 8th and moved to 3rd on Carson Kainer's sac bunt. Daniel Perales doubled to drive in Parker, putting the Reds back on top. Blair Erickson would come in at that point to get Justin Tordi to strike out and Jacob Long to ground out.

With two outs on the board in the bottom of the stanza, Brandon Roberts drew a walk, and Yancarlos Ortiz followed that up with a single. Edward Ovalle's line drive to right plated Roberts to tie up the game again. Ruben Medina would replace Krebs on the mound, getting Ramos to fly out to end the inning.

Erickson would walk Chris Heisey, who would be advanced by Castro's sac-bunt. Erickson then intentionally walked Francisco to get at Todd Fraizer, who flew out. Jeff Smith would then put Jose Lugo into the game, and the Dominican reliever walked Parker to load up the bags. But he'd put Kainer down on strikes, much to the delight of 900 or so fans still in attendance.

Berg walked to lead off the bottom of the ninth and Juan Portes singled to move him to 2nd. Smith would keep signaling for a bunt, first with Portes then with Tintor so perhaps it was not surprise that Tintor ended up striking out once the bunt was off. A wild pitch moved Berg and Portes around and Medina intentionally walked Santiesteban to get at Garrett Olson, who would pop out. That's when Roberts walk-off RBI came on a single out to Heisey in center, and set off a feel good win that had the guys jumping around on the field like they'd just won the world series.

Roberts finished up 3-for-4 on the night with a walk, a run and a run batted in. Ortis was 2-for-3 while Ovalle, Ramos, and Portes were all 2-for-4. Ovalle had a RBI, while Ramos added a run and a run scored. Santiesteban finished up 1-for-3 with a walk, while Berg, who was 0-for-2 at the plate had a run on a pair of walks.

The Miracle head off on a six game road trip starting off Tuesday night in Tampa where Ivan Nova (6-11, 4.37) will toss out the first pitch at 7:00 PM. The Miracle will counter with Oswaldo Sosa (2-0, 3.52).

Breeze: Photo
Breeze: Photo
Let's go Miracle Blog

* Jose Mijares was promoted prior to the game, I believe to the Rock Cats. It would have been nice to hang onto him, but we already knew it was only a matter of time before he went up.

* What up with the Miracle? It's pretty obvious that their play of late has been not up to par. That's because Jeff Smith has been working the team hard on drills and trying to get them ready for the up coming playoffs. Up until about a week ago. He's now started to lay off, let the guys use the skills they've learned, and get a little bit of breather before they head down the home stretch.

* From MiLB.com:

THE WEEK THAT WAS: The Miracle split their six games last week, chalking up two wins over Dunedin and a win over Clearwater to end the week. The Miracle are in fifth place, seven games behind Dunedin in the FSL West.

WHO'S HOT, WHO'S NOT: C Wilson Ramos has been opening some eyes with his bat. With 16 hits over his last 40 plate appearances, Ramos has been hitting at a .400 clip. In his last nine games Ramos has 12 RBIs and a home run. ... SP Deolis Guerra has been tagged for 10 runs in his last nine innings pitched.

PLAYER TO WATCH: CF Danny Santiesteban has been giving FSL pitchers headaches in recent days, averaging nearly an RBI a hit. The Miami native has 12 RBIs in his last 10 games while racking up 13 hits in 33 at-bats for a .394 average.

PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK: Ramos was responsible for a third of the Miracle's 15 runs in a 15-4 home win over Clearwater July 31. The native of Venezuela had four hits in five at-bats, including a double, for five RBIs. The right-handed hitter began the game with a run-scoring line drive single to left as part of a three-run first inning for Fort Myers. He drove home two more runs in the second on a double to center, singled to center in the third for another RBI and plated another run in the sixth on a ground ball to center.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: "He always told me to put away the bat and start pitching," RHP Carlos Gutierrez told the Fort Myers News-Press of how his high school coach coaxed him to pitch, which he first began in his junior year of high school. "I played infield for a good part of my life."

* Ft. Myers Miracle catcher Wilson Ramos is the Twins Minor League Player of the Week for July 27-August 2. Ramos, 20, hit .433 (13-for-30) with three doubles, a home run, four runs scored and 10 RBIs in six games. Ramos entered the season as the Twins third ranked prospect by Baseball America. He was signed as a non-drafted free agent, July 7, 2004.

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