PORT SAINT LUCIE, Fla. (May 9, 2019) - Thomas Milone's go-ahead home run in the sixth inning was the difference Thursday, as the Charlotte Stone Crabs beat the St. Lucie Mets 3-1 in eight innings at First Data Field.
With the Stone Crabs (16-18) trailing 1-0 in the top of the sixth, Carl Chester reached base on a Blake Tiberi fielding error. The next batter was Milone, who turned on a Carlos Hernandez (0-2) pitch and delivered a two-run home run to right to give Charlotte a 2-1 lead.
Charlotte tacked on another run in the top of the seventh on a Taylor Walls sacrifice fly.
Right-hander Stephen Woods Jr. (1-0) went four innings to get the win in his Tampa Bay Rays and High-A debut. Woods missed all of 2018 with a shoulder injury after being acquired from San Francisco in the Evan Longoria trade. Thursday was his first official outings since 2017.
Rays rehabber Jose De Leon worked three scoreless innings to start the night for Charlotte. De Leon allowed just two hits and one walk while fanning one.
With the Stone Crabs leading 3-1 in the top of the ninth, Zach Rutherford singled before the game was stopped due to rain. The game was eventually suspended and called final after eight innings of play.
The Stone Crabs will go for the series victory at 6:30 p.m. on Friday. Tobias Myers (1-1, 3.76) will make the start for Charlotte against Tony Dibrell (3-1, 2.61) of St. Lucie. Coverage starts at 6:15 p.m. on the Stone Crabs Baseball Network.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.