TAMPA, Fla. - The Tampa Yankees (28-35) started a six-game in four days series with the Lakeland Flying Tigers (31-28) today at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Today's afternoon match-up went to the Flying Tigers, 6-3. Kyle Ryan (12-7) got the win against Tampa's Rafael De Paula (1-3).
Devon Travis was the second batter in the top of the first and hit a solo homerun. Keeping their momentum in the second, Steve Moya singled, and then stole second and third. He scored off a double from teammate Corey Jones for a 2-0 lead. The Yankees answered back when Peter O'Brien led off with a double and advanced to third on a ground out from Dan Fiorito. Tyson Blaser came through with a single to score O'Brien putting the game at 2-1.
The Flying Tigers didn't waste any time adding to their count in the third and fourth innings. Jason Krizan led off the top of the third with a solo homerun, followed by consecutive singles from Dean Green, Aaron Westlake, and Francisco Martinez to put another run over the plate. In the fourth, Jones singled and advanced to third when Krizan doubled. Jones scored on a sacrifice fly and Lakeland kept the lead, 5-1.
Cody Grice led off the bottom of the fifth with a single and advanced to second with a steal. Cito Culver singled with two outs and Grice scored for a 5-2 game. Zachary Varce came in to pitch for De Paula in the sixth. De Paula threw five innings, giving up ten hits and five earned runs with four strikeouts.
The T-Yanks scored their third and final run of the game in the bottom of the eighth when Taylor Dugas hit his first homerun in a TY uniform.
Lakeland's starter Ryan left the game after throwing eight innings with six hits and three earned runs. The Flying Tigers tacked on one final run in the ninth with a homerun from Aaron Westlake for the 6-3 game.
The two teams will play double headers on Friday and Saturday in Lakeland and return to Steinbrenner Field on Sunday, September 1st for the final game of the 2013 season. Seniors ages 55 and older can receive a free hot dog, popcorn, and soda with the purchase of a reserved ticket ($5) at the Steinbrenner Field Box Office for Sunday home games.