The Dunedin Blue Jays have turned to RHP Connor Eller for spot starts four times this season, and four times they've left happy with the results. Tuesday evening was no exception, as the righty tossed 5.2 shutout innings, his longest outing as a professional, scattering five hits and striking out four, helping the Blue Jays to a 6-0 win over Clearwater.
With his start today, Eller has now thrown 15.0 innings this season as a starter and allowed just one earned run, good for a spectacular 0.60 ERA.
In the early going, Clearwater's Alejandro Requena matched Eller zero-for-zero, as the two pitchers combined to allow just three hits through the first three innings. In the fourth, however, the Dunedin bats broke through using walks to DH Alberto Mineo and 1B David Jacob and back-to-back-to-back doubles by LF Brock Lundquist, RF Rodrigo Orozco, and 2B Yeltsin Gudino to open up a 4-0 lead.
In the fifth, Mineo reached on a dropped third strike, advanced on a wild pitch, and scored on an RBI single by C Riley Adams, putting Dunedin up 5-0.
With two out in the top of the sixth, the Blue Jays elected to go to the bullpen with two runners on. RHP Jonny Cheshire entered and needed just one out to end the inning, inducing a groundball to first to strand both runners.
In the home half of the sixth, David Jacob launched a solo shot for Dunedin, his fourth of the season, making the score 6-0.
Cheshire followed with a scoreless seventh and recorded the first two outs in the eighth before ceding to RHP Jackson McClelland. McClelland finished the eighth with a strikeout and recorded two more K's in a scoreless ninth.
The win is Dunedin's eighth straight, improving their second half record to a league-best 13-6 and moving their full-season record above .500 at 44-43. Over the course of the winning streak, the Blue Jays have averaged over five runs per game and the pitching staff holds a 1.16 ERA having allowed just eight runs in eight games.
Dunedin and Clearwater will continue their four-game series at Dunedin Stadium tomorrow evening at 6:30 PM. RHP Patrick Murphy will take hill for the Blue Jays working to improve his 1.51 ERA since June 1st.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.