Saturday Sweep Keeps Marauders in Playoff Hunt
CLEARWATER, Fla. — The Marauders won the completion of Friday’s game, 6-2, before hanging on to win a close nightcap, 4-3, on Saturday night at BayCare Ballpark. The wins keep the Marauders (38-26, 67-62) in the hunt for a postseason berth entering the final game of the regular season. Bradenton
CLEARWATER, Fla. — The Marauders won the completion of Friday’s game, 6-2, before hanging on to win a close nightcap, 4-3, on Saturday night at BayCare Ballpark.
The wins keep the Marauders (38-26, 67-62) in the hunt for a postseason berth entering the final game of the regular season. Bradenton needs a win and a Dunedin loss to Palm Beach in order to qualify for the postseason.
Picking up the first game with a 5-0 lead in the first inning, Bradenton sent Luis Peralta to the mound to make the start in the game’s resumption. The left-hander would finish with two runs allowed over four innings, walking three and striking out six.
The teams each scored one run in the second inning, with the Marauders getting a Norkis Marcos bases-loaded walk in the top half and Dakota Kotowski slugging a solo homer in the home half for Clearwater. The Threshers (22-41, 57-71) got an RBI-single from Matt Alifano in the fourth inning to come within four runs, 6-2, but would not come any closer. Right-hander Ryan Harbin, making his Single-A debut, tossed two innings of scoreless relief for Bradenton, and Jack Hartman followed with a scoreless seventh to seal the win.
In the second game, the Marauders rallied for an early lead off Threshers starter Gunner Mayer, who walked the game’s first four batters. Amid the bout of wildness, Tsung-Che Cheng stole third base and scored the game’s first run when catcher Micah Yonamine’s throw to third sailed into left field. Rodolfo Nolasco contributed a run-scoring fielder’s choice grounder for a 2-0 Bradenton lead.
Joelvis del Rosario turned in a strong start for the Marauders but surrendered two solo home runs, a Cade Fergus blast in the second inning and a game-tying shot by Yonamine in the fourth.
But in the top of the sixth, with the score tied, 2-2, the Marauders loaded the bases with one out against reliever Chase Webster on two walks and a hit batsman. Daniel Harper took over for Webster and allowed a go-ahead RBI-single to Cheng on an 0-2 pitch, and Termarr Johnson followed with a sacrifice fly to left field, giving Bradenton a 4-2 lead.
Wilkin Ramos pitched a scoreless bottom of the sixth and continued into the seventh, but was pulled after allowing a leadoff walk to Jamari Baylor and a Wilfredo Flores double that pushed Baylor to third. Carlos Lomeli entered to pitch and induced a groundout to shortstop before the Marauders decided to intentionally walk Chad Castillo, loading the bases with one out to set up double-play possibilities. Lomeli struck out Otto Kemp, but Yonamine was hit by a pitch forcing home a run and moving the tying run to third base and the winning run to second. But Kotowski followed by lining out hard to Johnson at second base, ending the game and keeping the Marauders’ playoff hopes alive.
First pitch for Sunday’s regular-season finale is scheduled for 12 p.m. at BayCare Ballpark. RHP Po-Yu Chen will start for the Marauders, while LHP Matt Osterberg will start for Clearwater.
For more information about the Bradenton Marauders, please call (941) 747-3031, visit BradentonMarauders.com, or email [email protected].