CLEARWATER (Saturday, August 31) - The Clearwater Threshers finished off their home slate with a 6-0 shutout victory over the Dunedin Blue Jays Saturday in front of 7,227 fans at Bright House Field.
Clearwater (32-34, 67-67) snapped a 35.1-inning scoreless streak in the bottom of the second, ensuring they would not be shut out for a fifth consecutive game. With the win, the Threshers clinched victory in the season series against the Blue Jays (25-39, 62-68), who still will advance to the postseason as first-half champions in the FSL North.
The Threshers got the scoring started in the bottom of the second inning against Dunedin starter Matt Boyd (0-2). With one out, Boyd surrendered a single to right fielder Cameron Perkins and a walk to designated hitter Brock Stassi, putting runners on first and second. That brought up shortstop Jonathan Roof, who belted a 1-0 fastball over the left-field fence for a three-run homer to wake up the Clearwater offense. With two outs, catcher Logan Moore hammered a first-pitch fastball out to right for a solo blast, running the Threshers lead to 4-0.
Clearwater added a pair in the bottom of the fifth against Blue Jays reliever John Anderson, who gave up two singles and a walk to load the bases with no outs. A bouncer back to the mound retired third baseman Harold Martinez at home, and left fielder Aaron Altherr whiffed for the second out, but first baseman Chris Serritella chopped a single up the middle, scoring Moore and center fielder Jiwan James to give Clearwater the 6-0 edge.
Clearwater starter Luis Paulino (7-6) earned the victory with five scoreless innings. He amassed seven strikeouts against five hits and three walks. Steven Inch contributed three stellar innings of shutout relief, fanning two and allowing one hit. Ryan O'Sullivan finished off the game with a scoreless inning, striking out one and walking one.
Boyd took the loss, with four runs allowed on four hits and a walk over four innings, recording four strikeouts. Anderson surrendered two runs on three hits and a walk in two innings while whiffing two. Tyler Ybarra gave up a hit in a scoreless inning, and Wil Browning pitched a perfect inning of relief.
The Threshers will conclude their 2013 campaign Sunday against Dunedin, with righty Severino Gonzalez starting for Clearwater against Blue Jays righty Jesse Hernandez. First pitch is scheduled for 5:00 p.m., and the pregame show with Ben Gellman and Kirsten Karbach starts at 4:45 from Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.