Lakeland held off a late rally by Daytona to grab the 11-10 victory on Monday night at Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland. The Flying Tigers and Cubs combined for 21 runs on 24 hits, including four home runs.
Daytona had a chance to tie the game in the ninth after C Chadd Krist and 3B Jeimer Candelario worked one-out walks. DH Rock Shoulders struck out with the runners on, and SS Marco Hernandez grounded out to end the threat.
The Cubs were trailing 11-7 in the 7th inning when Candelario ripped a two-run double down the right field line to plate LF Bijan Rademacher and 1B Dan Vogelbach. Hernandez notched an RBI on a groundout to make it a one-run ball game.
Candelario had a break-out game for Daytona. He went 2-for-4 with a grand slam, the double, and six RBIs.
Rademacher extended his hitting streak to 12-straight games with a 3-for-5 night, including an RBI double and two runs scored.
Daytona scored five runs in the second inning, trailing 5-1. After 2B Gioskar Amaya grounded out, CF Albert Almora, Rademacher and 1B Dan Vogelbach all singled to load the bases. Candelario then came to the dish with two away and drove a grand slam over the right field wall to tie the game up at 5-5. The Cubs added another run on a Hernandez RBI single.
Rob Zastryzny (L, 1-2) lasted just four innings in his start. He allowed eight runs on eight hits with four walks. Zastryzny allowed three home runs: a grand slam in the first by 1B James Robbins, a solo home run by C Austin Green in the third, and a two-run shot by CF Connor Harrell in the fourth.
Lakeland scored 11 runs in the first five innings of the ball game. The final three were tagged to RHP Stephen Perakslis in his first of two innings in relief of Zastryzny. RHP Arodys Vizcaino and LHP Andrew McKirahan combined to shutout Lakeland in the final two frames.
The Flying Tigers tallied 12 hits. SS Dixon Machado and RF Jeff McVaney combined for six of those, with three RBIs and four runs scored as well. LF Chad Wright had his 14-game hitting streak snapped after going 0-for3 with two walks.
RHP Yorfrank Lopez got the start for Lakeland, but struggled in the first three innings. Lopez left with two outs in the third. He surrendered six runs on eight hits with a walk. RHP Tanner Bailey (W, 1-0) came in relief of Lopez, and pitched one-hit baseball in 2.1 innings of work. RHP Brennan Smith (S, 1) allowed just two walks in the final two innings, and held Daytona off the scoreboard.
Canderlario's six RBIs are the most by any Daytona Cubs player in a single game this season. Seven of the Cubs' 10 runs were scored with two outs. Monday night also marked the first time since June 18, 2013 that a Florida State League game featured two grand slams. Daytona hit both grand slams on that night, one by Javier Baez and the other by Tim Saunders, in a 14-8 win in Clearwater.
RHP Yao-Lin Wang and RHP Edgar De La Rosa are scheduled to get the start on Tuesday night in game two of the three-game series. First pitch in Lakeland is slated for 6:30 p.m.