FORT MYERS, Fla. - A five run fourth inning propelled the Tampa Tarpons past the Fort Myers Miracle, 5-4, on Thursday night at Hammond Stadium.
After retiring the first nine men he faced, Miracle starter Jordan Balazovic (5-3) ran into trouble in the fourth. Steven Sensley smashed a two-run double off the base of the wall in right before scoring on a Wilkerman Garcia single. Later in the frame, with the Tarpons leading 3-0, and two runners on, Jason Lopez grounded an RBI single back to the mound, and a second run scored on a Balazovic throwing error.
The right-hander yielded five runs (three earned) in 4.2 innings. He walked one and struck out four.
The Miracle began chipping away in the bottom of the fourth. Trey Cabbage tripled in the Miracle's first run of the game and then raced home to score when Estevan Florial bobbled the ball in center.
Still trailing 5-2 in the sixth, the Miracle closed to within a run on sacrifice flies from Jose Miranda and Andrew Bechtold.
In the ninth, the Miracle put two runners on before Royce Lewis flied out to end the game.
Tyler Watson starred in relief, allowing just one hit in 4.1 scoreless frames. The left-hander walked two and struck out two.
The Miracle begin a six-game road trip on Friday night when they take on the Florida Fire Frogs in the first of three from Kissimmee. The Fire Frogs are the Class-A Advanced affiliate of the Atlanta Braves. First pitch is slated for 6:00 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.