CLEARWATER -- A season-high 9,069 fans came out to Bright House Field on Thursday for an Independence Day celebration, but the Clearwater Threshers suffered a 14-6 loss to the Dunedin Blue Jays in game three of the four-game set.
Roman Quinn turned in a 3-for-5 performance out of the leadoff spot, knocking home two runs and scoring twice. Angelo Mora also had a productive night at the dish, finishing 2-for-3 including a triple and a double.
Dunedin broke out for four runs in the first inning off of Jeb Stefan (4-8), all coming with one out. Emilio Guerrero's run-scoring double was the third consecutive two-bagger for Dunedin, and capped the first-inning rally with the Blue Jays up 4-0.
After Ben White set down the first six men he faced in the ballgame, the Threshers broke the shutout in the third inning. Harold Martinez reached on an infield single to lead off, and Corey Bass followed that up with a five-pitch walk.
Mora moved both runners into scoring position when he laid down a sacrifice bunt, and Quinn brought home Martinez from third with an RBI grounder to cut the deficit to 4-1.
Dunedin would open up a 10-1 advantage after the following two frames. The Blue Jays tagged Stefan for two in the fourth, before putting up another four-spot in the fifth inning facing reliever Dan Child.
Clearwater closed the gap after rallying for three runs in the bottom half.
It was Mora who got things going with a triple to right-center, and Quinn brought him across with a single to right. J.P. Crawford dropped down a bunt for a hit, and after an errant throw from third baseman Gustavo Pierre, the Threshers had a pair in scoring position for Everett Williams.
Williams hit a hard grounder that got by the first baseman L.B. Dantzler for a double, bringing home both Quinn and Crawford to make it a 10-4 deficit.
Dunedin quickly answered to make it 14-4 in the sixth, with a Nick Baligod grand slam boosting the Blue Jays to the double-digit advantage.
Clearwater would load the bases in the seventh, but reliever Justin Jackson got Brandon Short to ground into a double play to plate just a lone run.
The Threshers will try to earn a split of the series on Friday, when they head to Dunedin for a 4:15 p.m. finale on Independence Day.