TAMPA, Fla. - After tying the game at 3-3 in the seventh, the Brevard County Manatees fell 5-3 to the Tampa Yankees on Saturday night at George M. Steinbrenner Field.
With runners on second and third in the bottom of the eighth, the 'Tees (6-3 second half, 35-42 overall) were one out away from taking a tied game into the ninth. Tampa's JR Murphy though had other plans as his ground-rule double with two outs off of Brian Garman gave the Yanks (5-4, 35-41) a 5-3 lead and the eventual win of both the game and the three-game series.
The Manatees received a quality start from Drew Gagnon, who was making his first appearance with Brevard since being promoted from Class-A Wisconsin. Gagnon went six innings and allowed three runs on seven hits. He walked just one and fanned five Yankees.
Down 3-1 after six innings, the 'Tees rallied in the top of the seventh. Cody Hawn led the inning off with his 20th double of the season. Hawn came home one batter later as he was plated on a Parker Berberet RBI single.
Nick Shaw then reached first on a fielder's choice as Berberet was retired at second. Reggie Keen then stepped in and hit his 12th double of the season to put runners on second and third with one out. T.J. Mittelstaedt then walked to load the bases as the Yankees then called on a new reliever, Tom Kahnle.
Kahnle was able to strike out the red-hot Jason Rogers for the second out. The 'Tees would then tie the game without even putting the bat on the ball as Kahnle threw a wild pitch with Mike Walker at the plate that allowed Shaw to score and tie the game. Walker though grounded out to end the threat and the inning.
Keen was the only Manatee to record more than one hit as he was 2-for-4 with a double. Hector Gomez had the only other Brevard County extra base hit - a triple in the sixth in which he got thrown out trying to take home - in his debut with the Milwaukee organization.
The Manatees will continue their road trip on the west side of the state as they visit the Clearwater Threshers to begin a three-game series on Sunday at 1:00 p.m.
Taylor Jungmann (5-4, 3.64) will toe the rubber for Brevard. The 2011 first round pick will look to continue to build on a solid month of June, in which he went 2-0 with a 2.63 ERA in four starts.
Clearwater will send southpaw Austin Wright (7-2, 3.62) to the hill. In his only other outing against the 'Tees this season, Wright tallied ten strikeouts in five innings of work against Brevard back on April 22.