BRADENTON, Fla. (April 8, 2017) - The Stone Crabs battled back to tie the game in the top of the ninth, but eventually fell 7-6 to the Bradenton Marauders Saturday night at LECOM Park.
Down by one in the top of the ninth, Charlotte (0-3) second baseman Brandon Lowe drew a one out walk before advancing to third on a single by Peter Maris. Jake Fraley followed by lining out to right. Lowe tagged and beat the throw to the plate to tie the game at six.
In the bottom of the ninth, Bradenton (3-0) got a leadoff single from Logan Hill. After Ke'Bryan Hayes bunted him to second, Jordan George walked. Stone Crabs reliever Taylor Hawkins (0-1) then struck out Casey Hughston. Hawkins followed by walking consecutive batters to force home the winning run.
Bradenton right fielder Daniel Arribas drew the walk the ended the game after coming up with the go-ahead RBI in the eighth as well. With the game tied at five in the bottom of the eighth, Hughson singled before being bunted to second. After a wild pitch pushed him to third, Arribas singled to short to give the Marauders a 6-5 lead.
Stone Crabs starting pitcher Jose Mujica gave up four runs on eight hits over 5.1 innings while striking out three. Charlotte reliever Michael Santos was charged with two runs on five hits in 2.2 innings. The Stone Crabs team ERA now stands at 8.10 for the season.
After the Marauders plated a run in the first, the Stone Crabs battled back against Bradenton starter Mitch Keller. Nathan Lukes and Lowe started the inning with back-to-back singles. After a lineout, center fielder Jake Fraley deposited a three-run home run over the wall in right to give Charlotte a 3-1 lead. The Stone Crabs then got two more singles from Jake Cronenworth and Brett Sullivan which knocked Keller from the game. Two batters later, Dalton Kelly doubled to the wall in center to make the score 5-1.
The Stone Crabs will try and salvage the finale of their four-game set with the Marauders on Sunday at 1 p.m. LHP Michael Velasquez makes the start for Charlotte against LHP Taylor Hearn of the Marauders. Coverage begins at 12:45 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.