Tampa 6 at Fort Myers 5
W: R. Semerano (4-1, 5.09); L: J. Lugo (2-6, 4.04); SV: J. Schmidt (16)
HR: TAM: L. Nunez (3).
It took Jose Lugo a total of two pitches to lose the final game of the regular season for the playoff bound Fort Myers Miracle. There is some speculation that the Miracle have been playing the cards close, and that they are ready to turn it on in the playoffs, but there should be a matter of pride in winning the final game of the season in front of the home town crowd.
Matt Williams took the start for the Miracle, and it didn't take long for Tampa to find their way onto base. After getting Matt Cusick out on strikes, The Professor gave up a single to Luis Nunez. Kevin Smith reached on a fielding error by Juan Portes. Josh Kreuzer struck out swinging, but Seth Fortenberry doubled to drive in the pair. Fortenberry would try to a triple, but was taken down at 3rd base. The damage was done however.
The Miracle took one back in the bottom of the inning. Portes singled and stole 2nd. Steve Singleton's outfield fly moved Portes to 3rd and he'd come home on a Rene Tosoni ground out.
Jesse Hoover would replace Michael Solback in the bottom of the 3rd for Tampa, and after getting Eli Tintor to fly out allowed a single to Garrett Olson, who then stole 2nd. Portes singled in Olson, tying up the game. Sing drew a walk before Tosoni would go down on strikes for the second out. Wilson Ramos then singled to drive in Portes putting the Miracle on top.
Eddie Ovalle would take a talk in the top of the 4th, then steal 2nd. Johnny Woodard would fly out, and Tintor ground out. Olson and Portes hit back-to-back singles that plated Ovalle and a Singleton line drive brought in Olson to pad the lead.
Matt Williams would work four innings, allowing two runs, neither of which were earned, on 3 hits while striking out 3. Alex Burnett worked the fifth and Carlos Gutierrez the six, each allowing only one hit to the Yankees. Danny Santiesteban took the seventh and would return for the eighth.
Mitch Hilligoss doubled and moved to 3rd on Ryan Baker's ground out. Tim Battle took a walk. Looking to protect the Miracle's 3-run lead, Jeff Smith called for a pitching change bringing in Lugo who promptly hit Cusick with a pitch to load the bags. Nunez then took the first pitch he saw deep over the left field fence for a grand slam.
Rain started to interfere with the game that had been played in high winds shortly there after. The Miracle would never make it to the bottom of the 9th before a torential downpour from Hurricane Gustov finished the contest and cut short any thoughts of a ninth inning rally.
The Twins take Monday off and travel to Dunedin on Tuesday for game one of the South Divsion Championship round.
Pending Pinstripes Blog
There is a van leaving for Dunedin from the Target on Santa Barbara in the Cape Tuesday at 2 PM. Space is very limited. If you want to be on it, you need to be there early. Iris is organizing the trip up to Dunedin. Bring enough money to play for your ticket in, concessions and a portion of the vehicle's fuel expense.
Danny Valencia put two over the fence for two runs and five RBIs for the New Britain Rock Cats who defeated the Binghamton Mets 9-6 in New Britain Stadium. Former Miracle Yohan Pino picked up the win, Brian Dinkelman was 2-for-5 at the plate with 2 runs and a pair of RBIs. Danny Berg was 2-for-4 with a pair of runs for the Cats as well.
The Rochester Red Wings downed the Buffalo Bisons 5-4 at Frontier Field. Trevor Plouffe was 3-for-5 at the plate with a RBI, while former Miracle catcher Jeff Christy was 2-for-2 with a walk and a run. Anthony Swarzak allowed 3 runs, one earned, on seven hits while fanning two over seven innings, but would leave with the no decision. Julio DePaula would pick up the win in the 9th inning.
The Beloit Snappers slipped past the Burlington Bees 4-3 at Pohlman Field. Mike Allen took the win for the Snaps who saw Estarlin De Los Santos, Mark Dolenc and Juan Richardson each hit two in the contest. Former Miracle Yangervis Solarte was 1-for-3 at the plate with a run and 2 RBIs.
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