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Threshers Drop Pitchers' Duel in Series Finale with Miracle

Garcia's seven terrific frames not enough in series sweep
Clearwater Threshers in a game against the Jupiter Hammerheads at Spectrum Field in Clearwater Florida June 5 2019. (Nathan Ray)
July 3, 2019

CLEARWATER, Fla. - The Clearwater Threshers were stifled again by the Fort Myers Miracle pitching staff in a 1-0 loss in front of a record, 10,055 fans at Spectrum Field on Wednesday night. The loss drops the Threshers to 20-21 at home.

CLEARWATER, Fla. - The Clearwater Threshers were stifled again by the Fort Myers Miracle pitching staff in a 1-0 loss in front of a record, 10,055 fans at Spectrum Field on Wednesday night. The loss drops the Threshers to 20-21 at home.

It was a battle between two strong starting pitchers at Spectrum Field, as Julian Garcia (5-5) and Edwar Colina (4-2) matched each other frame-for-frame through the first six innings.
Garcia set the tone for the Threshers (46-36, 10-6) who allowed just three baserunners through the first five frames. The 24-year-old was backed by two double plays to keep Fort Myers (45-37, 6-10) scoreless through six. The right-hander dropped his season ERA to 2.73 in the losing effort.
The Miracle found life against Garcia in the seventh. Michael Helman drove a first-pitch fastball into the bullpens in left to push Fort Myers in front, 1-0. Garcia retired the next three to limit the damage.
It was another strong start for Julian Garcia, who struck out four and allowed just two hits through seven frames. Despite the loss, the Broomfield, Colo. native picked up his seventh quality start of 2019. The right-hander has allowed just one run in his last two starts, spanning 14.0 innings of work.
The Threshers offense found trouble against the sharp right-hander Colina (4-2), who tossed eight shoutout innings with nine strikeouts. Despite the effort, Clearwater had a chance to rally against the bullpen in the ninth.
Zach Neff (SV, 1) entered the game and retired the first two before Matt Vierling worked a two-out walk to keep the inning alive. Simon Muzziotti went after the first pitch, but grounded out to second to close out the game. Neff earned his first save of 2019 with the scoreless ninth.
Clearwater was swept by the Minnesota Twins' affiliate for the second time at home this year, with the first from April 12-14. The Threshers are 1-8 against Fort Myers in 2019. Clearwater's offense managed just 15 hits in the three-game set.
Daniel Brito was the only offensive spark in the loss, finishing 1-for-2 with a double and a walk. The shortstop was the only Thresher to reach base against the opposing starter.
Clearwater travels to George M. Steinbrenner Field to take on the Tampa Tarpons for a four-game series beginning Thursday night. LHP Ethan Evanko (4-2 1.68) will get the ball for the Threshers against Tarpons' RHP Shawn Semple (1-1 3.09). First pitch in the series opener is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. with coverage beginning at 6:15 p.m. on threshersbaseball.com.