Blue Jays Jump on Tarpons Early, Win 9-4
Tampa, FL — After giving up a season-high twelve runs on Tuesday night, the Blue Jays lineup came into Wednesday night’s contest swinging, scoring from the get-go at Steinbrenner Field. Dunedin drew first blood in the first inning off Tampa starter Kris Bow with Peyton Williams bringing in Manuel Beltre
Tampa, FL — After giving up a season-high twelve runs on Tuesday night, the Blue Jays lineup came into Wednesday night’s contest swinging, scoring from the get-go at Steinbrenner Field.
Dunedin drew first blood in the first inning off Tampa starter Kris Bow with Peyton Williams bringing in Manuel Beltre from second on an RBI-single. Then after Williams stole his third bag of the year to get into scoring position, Tucker Toman brought him in on a tough play in left field that was ruled an error by Tarpons OF Felix Negueis.
Jaden Rudd kept the bats hot by hitting a solo home run to lead off the second inning, his first Single-A homer. Back-to-back walks drawn by J.C. Masson and Roque Salinas put a couple runners on, and Adrian Pinto hit his fourth double of the year to bring in Masson, moving Salinas to third. Beltre drove both men in with his second knock of the night, putting Dunedin up 6-0 before Tampa finally went to the bullpen.
Yorlin Calderon entered the game for the Tarpons with Beltre on first and no outs, retiring the first batter he faced on a pop out, but Peyton Williams gave him a proper welcome to the ballgame, mashing his fifth home run of the year to put the Blue Jays up 8-0.
The infield sprinklers would come on immediately after Williams crossed the plate, staying on for about five seconds before shutting off. But two pitches into the next at-bat, they’d come on again, creating puddles in the infield and causing a fourteen-minute delay.
Tampa would finally stop the bleeding and get out of the second inning, scoring two off Blue Jays starter Brandon Barriera, but Dunedin would tack another run on in the third to make it 9-2. That would be all the runs the Blue Jays would score, but it’d also be all they’d need as Tampa could only tack on two more throughout the game with the bullpen performing well.
LHP Harry Rutkowski and RHP Lazaro Estrada were both excellent in relief for Dunedin. Rutkowski threw a perfect fifth inning, striking out two and qualifying for his third win of the year. And Estrada entered in the seventh, only allowing two base runners in the final three innings to record his third save in as many attempts.
Dunedin took the game 9-4 to even the series up, moving to 19-16 on the year with Tampa falling to 12-23. Game three will be on Thursday night in Tampa, with first pitch scheduled for 6:30 p.m. The game will be available live on the Dunedin Blue Jays Radio Network with coverage beginning at 6:15 p.m.