Tampa, Fla. - The Tampa Yankees (4-8) and the Dunedin Blue Jays (9-3) played a back-and-forth battle at George M. Steinbrenner Field on Tuesday night. A late comeback attempt fell short for the T-Yanks as the D-Jays went on to win 8-6.
Yankee's starting pitcher Corey Black ran into trouble in the third inning. After back-to-back singles by Nick Baligod and Aaron Munoz, Black walked Peter Mooney to load the bases with one out. Later, Kevin Patterson drove in Munoz with a fielder's choice ground ball to Carmen Angelini. However, the bases remained loaded when Angelini failed to beat Mooney to the second base bag. Gabe Jacobo then hit a line drive down the left field line to clear the bases and give the Blue Jays a 4-0 lead.
Tampa would battle back in the fourth. After Dunedin starter Aaron Sanchez walked Gary Sanchez, Saxon Butler reached on an errant throw by Jacobo. A single by Eduardo Sosa loaded the bases. Ali Castillo then delivered a two RBI single. A fielder's choice by Francisco Arcia drove in Sosa. Jose Toussen then hit an RBI single to tie the game, 4-4.
Dunedin reliever Scott Gracey (2-0) pitched two no-hit innings in the fifth and sixth while striking out three.
The Blue Jays took back the lead in the sixth. Yankee's reliever John Brebbia (0-1) walked Jacobo to begin the inning. After a one out single by Marcus Knecht, Baligod drove in a run with a fielder's choice. The play was made at home where Gary Sanchez appeared to have time to tag out Jacobo; however, safe was the call. Aaron Munoz continued the inning with an RBI single. Later, Mooney drove in two more runs with an RBI single to make it 8-4.
The Yankees pulled within two in the eighth inning. After Sanchez reached on a hit-by-pitch, he advanced to second on a wild pitch by Dunedin reliever Dustin Antolin. With one out, Sosa delivered an RBI ground-rule double. Castillo then hit an RBI single to make 8-6. Castillo finished with three RBI on the night.
In the bottom of the ninth, Blue Jay's closer Blake McFarland pitched a perfect frame to earn his third save of the season.
The series will wrap up with a 7 p.m. game on Wednesday night. RHP Shane Greene is scheduled to pitch for the Yankees. Fans can enjoy Kids Night where kids 14 and under receive a free hot dog, soda and ice cream with the purchase of a reserved ticket. Also, the first 250 fans in attendance will receive a free Yankees lunch box.