Early Miscues Hurt Marauders in 6-3 Loss
BRADENTON, Fla. — A maladroit second inning by the Marauders infield Saturday night paved the way for a four-run rally for the visitors as Bradenton fell, 6-3, to the Fort Myers Mighty Mussels at LECOM Park. The loss, along with a rain-shortened Tampa win over Dunedin earlier in the day,
BRADENTON, Fla. — A maladroit second inning by the Marauders infield Saturday night paved the way for a four-run rally for the visitors as Bradenton fell, 6-3, to the Fort Myers Mighty Mussels at LECOM Park.
The loss, along with a rain-shortened Tampa win over Dunedin earlier in the day, dropped the Marauders (35-24, 64-60) into a two-way tie for second place with Tampa, a half-game behind first-place Dunedin.
Kala’i Rosario led off the second inning for the Mighty Mussels (24-34, 65-57) with a grounder to shortstop and reached first base safely when Tsung-Che Cheng overthrew first base. Ben Ross followed with a walk, and the Mussels loaded the bases on the next play when second baseman Termarr Johnson made a diving stop of a Rubel Cespedes grounder but made a wide, errant throw to Cheng at second base. Keoni Cavaco followed with a lineout to left field that was deep enough to plate Rosario for the game’s first run, and Nate Baez followed with a three-run homer for a 4-0 Mussels lead.
Marauders starter Joelvis del Rosario recovered to hold the Mussels scoreless in the third and fourth innings, maneuvering around three singles, but allowed a two-out RBI-single to Cespedes in the fifth before retiring the side with the score 6-0.
Del Rosario matched his career-high with six runs allowed (two earned) through five innings and took the loss.
Bradenton failed to score in their first four innings, aided by two baserunning miscues. The Marauders threatened in the second inning with runners on second and third and one out, but Tres Gonzalez lined out to second baseman Tanner Schobel and saw Brenden Dixon doubled off second base to end the inning. Schobel made a similar play in the third inning, snagging a Cheng liner and throwing to first base to double off Campana, who had drawn a leadoff walk.
After Mussels starter Tomas Cleto tossed four scoreless innings, the Marauders scored in the fifth off reliever Jackson Hicks. Gonzalez laced a one-out single and took third base on a Campana double, and Cheng drove both men home with a double to right-center. Johnson followed with a walk and executed a double steal with Cheng, but the two were left stranded as Matt Gorski and Jack Brannigan both struck out to end the inning.
The Marauders’ final run came in the sixth off A.J. Labas, as Juan Jerez walked, stole second base, and scored on a Gonzalez single. Over the final three innings, Bradenton managed just one baserunner, a Wyatt Hendrie single in the eighth, as Labas tossed a clean seventh and Niklas Rimmel earned the save with two scoreless innings for Fort Myers.
Minor-league rehabber Will Kobos pitched two scoreless innings in relief for the Marauders, as did right-hander Drew Irvine. Kobos received defensive help in the seventh from Campana, who caught a flyball in right field and threw home in time to nab Noah Miller, who attempted to tag up and score from third after tripling.
The series and the Marauders’ 2022 slate of home games concludes Sunday with first pitch scheduled for 12 p.m. at LECOM Park. RHP Po-Yu Chen will start for the Marauders, while LHP Jordan Carr will start for the Mighty Mussels.
For more information about the Bradenton Marauders, please call (941) 747-3031, visit BradentonMarauders.com, or email [email protected].