CLEARWATER (April 30, 2013) - The Clearwater Threshers closed the month of April on the skids with a 5-2 loss to the Fort Myers Miracle Tuesday night in front of 3,556 fans at Bright House Field.
The Threshers (11-14) dropped their third straight contest to the Miracle (21-4), who have now won an impressive seven straight. Clearwater never led in the contest, and the bullpen made matters more difficult by allowing two runs in three innings.
Fort Myers opened the scoring in the top of the second on an RBI double from Angel Morales that scored Matt Koch cleanly, with Andy Leer scoring on an error by Threshers center fielder Kyrell Hudson. The Threshers halved the margin in the bottom of the inning on a solo homer from left fielder Aaron Altherr off Fort Myers starter D.J. Baxendale (4-0) to make it 2-1.
The Miracle extended their lead in the top of the sixth when Eddie Rosario drew a leadoff walk from Clearwater starter Nick Hernandez (2-1) and Miguel Sano singled him to second. After a sacrifice bunt from Drew Leachman advanced the runners, Kennys Vargas singled Rosario home to make it 3-1 Fort Myers. The Miracle added another run on a solo homer by Angel Morales in the top of the seventh against Clearwater reliever Luis Paulino.
The Threshers made some noise in the bottom of the seventh, as back-to-back doubles by left fielder Cameron Perkins and catcher Logan Moore trimmed the margin to 4-2. However, the Threshers did nothing offensively from that point on, and Fort Myers added a run in the ninth on an RBI double by Levi Michael for the final 5-2 lead before Clearwater went in order in the bottom of the ninth.
Hernandez took the loss for Clearwater, allowing three runs (two earned) on seven hits and four walks in six innings, whiffing seven. Paulino allowed a run on two hits and fanned two in an inning. Colton Murray gave up a run on two hits over two innings, striking out three.
Baxendale got the win with six solid innings; he allowed two runs on five hits and a walk, fanning five. Chad Rodgers struck out one and allowed a single hit over two innings. Corey Williams pitched a perfect ninth with one strikeout for his sixth save.
The Threshers will look to avoid the sweep Wednesday, with southpaw Hoby Milner getting the ball for Clearwater against Fort Myers lefty Jason Wheeler. It's Happy Hour night at Bright House Field, presented by Belcher Bingo and Humana! Fans can come join us at the "Almost World Famous" Frenchy's Tiki Pavilion starting at 5:00 pm and enjoy our drink specials. Ladies drink free from 5:30 pm-6:30 pm. Also, during our Wednesday home games, Silver Shark Club Members receive free admission. It's also an afternoon game tailored to seniors with field box tickets 2 for 1 for people 55 and over. Gates open at 12 p.m. with first pitch scheduled for 1 p.m., and Ben Gellman will be on the call at ThreshersBaseball.com starting at 12:45 p.m.