TAMPA, Fla. - Five early runs led the Daytona Cubs (31-19) to a 5-1 win over the Tampa Yankees (25-31) on Friday night at George M. Steinbrenner Field.
After a perfect first inning, Yankees' starter Branden Pinder found trouble in the second. With two outs and the bases empty, Anthony Giansanti and Bijan Rademacher reached on singles. Chadd Krist then lined a ball over the left field wall for a three-run home run, giving the Cubs a 3-0 lead.
Daytona tacked on two more runs in the third. After leading off with a walk, Zeke Devoss stole second. One out later, Dustin Geiger drove in Devoss with a ground-rule double. A wild pitch by Pinder sent Geiger to third and a second wild pitch allowed the runner to score, giving the Cubs a 5-0 advantage.
Pinder (1-2) allowed five runs on six hits and two walks in four innings pitched. The right-hander struck out four in the loss.
The Tampa offense came to life in the seventh when Tyson Blaser and Dan Fiorito singled to begin the frame. Jose Toussen drew a walk to load the bases with no outs. Following a strikeout by Mikeson Oliberto, Ali Castillo drove in Blaser with an RBI groundout to second, cutting the deficit to 5-1. Taylor Dugas flew out to end the threat.
Edwards received a no-decision after pitching four shutout innings, walking one and striking out eight.
Cubs' reliever Kyler Burke (5-1) got the win after pitching two scoreless frames in the fifth and sixth. RHP Zach Cates recorded the save after allowing one run on two hits in three innings of relief. Cates struck out four and didn't allow a walk.
The Tampa pitching staff tallied 13 strikeouts, including seven by RHP Joel De La Cruz in three innings of relief. RHP Alex Smith struck out two batters in the eighth.
The series continues on Saturday at 6:00 p.m. RHP Rafael De Paula is scheduled to pitch for Tampa. Former T-Yank RHP Corey Black is scheduled to pitch for Daytona. Fans can enjoy Friends and Family Night sponsored by Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo. A family of four can enjoy four reserved tickets, four hotdogs, four chips, four sodas, four Tampa Yankees caps, and two passes to Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo for just $38.
Saturday is also Fan Appreciation Night with the Tampa Yankees sponsored by Wells Fargo and MyFloridaHomesMLS.com. Fans can enjoy raffle prizes all night long. Also, the first 600 fans will receive a limited edition Mariano Rivera bobble head doll. A fireworks show will follow the conclusion of the ball game.