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Mets mash past Tortugas, 9-6, on Opening Night

Allen II, Jones, and Triana record multi-hit nights, as St. Lucie spoils season opener
3B Michel Triana picked up a pair of hits — including a double — scoring a run and driving in another, but the St. Lucie Mets mashed their past the Daytona Tortugas, 9-6, in front of 2,653 fans at Jackie Robinson Ballpark on Friday night. (Aldrin Capulong)
April 8, 2022

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — CF Jay Allen II made a splash in his Tortugas' debut recording two hits, including a double, reaching base three times, and swiping a bag. However, it was St. Lucie's three-run seventh inning that decided the contest, as the Mets managed to snag a 9-6 victory

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — CF Jay Allen II made a splash in his Tortugas' debut recording two hits, including a double, reaching base three times, and swiping a bag. However, it was St. Lucie's three-run seventh inning that decided the contest, as the Mets managed to snag a 9-6 victory over Daytona in front of 2,635 fans at Jackie Robinson Ballpark on Friday night.

After a 201-day hiatus, the Tortugas (0-1) wasted no time taking the lead. With no men on and two out in the home half of the first, 3B Michel Triana (2-5, R, 2B, RBI, SO) sparked a rally with a two-out infield single. Following a walk to 1B Ruben Ibarra (1-3, R, 2 BB, 2 SO), LF Yerlin Confidan (1-4, R, 2 SO) slapped a soft ground ball to third base. The throw to first was on target but was lost by the first baseman in the setting sun behind the third-base bleachers. Triana scored from second, while Ibarra was thrown out at the plate, giving Daytona a 1-0 edge.

The lead did not last, though, as the Mets (1-0) quickly jumped in front in the second. With two aboard and nobody out, C Drake Osborn (1-3, 2 R, RBI, 2 BB) stung a liner into right-center field to bring home a run and knot the game at one.

After a strikeout, SS Shervyen Newton (2-3, 2B, RBI, BB) stepped into the box and, on the first pitch, Osborn broke towards second base. With the runner at third sprinting towards the plate, SS Gus Steiger slid in front of the second base bag and fired a strike to the plate to throw out the man attempting to steal home. Newton would still deliver the go-ahead blow, though, smashing a run-producing double into right to give the Mets a 2-1 edge.

St. Lucie mustered another multi-run frame in the third. With a man at second and two out, 3B William Lugo (2-5, 2 R, 2B, 2 RBI, 3 SO) scalded an RBI double to left and 2B Justin Guerrera (2-3, 2 R, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 BB) collected a run-creating single to center to push the Mets' advantage to 4-1.

After a CF Alex Ramirez (3-5, R, RBI, SO) single pushed the St. Lucie lead up to four in the fourth, Daytona started mounting a comeback. Ibarra began the home sixth with a single and advanced to second on a fielder's choice throwing error. With one out, C Hayden Jones (2-4, R, RBI, 2 SO) stroked a single to center to pull the Tortugas within three, 5-2.

Steiger (1-4, R, 2B, RBI, 2 SO) kept the onslaught going by lofting a fly ball down the line in right. The shot bounced off the turf and over the fence for a ground-rule double, drawing Daytona back within a pair. On the very next offering, 2B Sebastian Almonte (1-4, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 SO) dunked a soft liner into right field for a hit. Both runners came home to tie the game at five, while the 22-year-old motored into second with a double.

The tie did not stick, as the Mets retaliated in the seventh. LF Omar De Los Santos (1-5, R, SO) singled, stole second, and then put St. Lucie back ahead when he came home on a knock to left by Lugo. Guerrera roped an RBI double and 1B Jack-Thomas Wold (2-5, RBI) added a single to cap the three-run frame with St. Lucie back ahead, 8-5.

Both squads traded runs in the final two frames. The Mets extended their advantage in the eighth on a wild pitch, while Allen II (2-4, R, 2B) and Triana garnered consecutive doubles to pull the 'Tugas within 9-6 in the ninth.

Neither starter factored into the decision in the season opener. Daytona's RHP José Franco (3.1 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 3 BB, 3 SO) hit some bumps after a clean first inning. LHP Keyshawn Askew (3.0 IP, 4 H, R, 2 BB, 4 SO) permitted a single unearned run for the Mets over 3.0 frames of work.

LHP Nick Zwack (3.0 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 7 SO) surrendered the lead for St. Lucie in that sixth inning but still mustered seven strikeouts, en route to his first victory of the campaign. RHP Sam Benschoter (2.2 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, BB, 3 SO) was sublime over his first two frames of relief, but surrendered three in the seventh, taking his first loss of the year.

The three-game series continues on Saturday with the inaugural "The Nine" Night. The Tortugas will pay homage as part of Minor League Baseball’s focused outreach platform specifically designed to honor and celebrate the historic impact numerous Black baseball pioneers made on the sport. Special guests will be on hand as the franchise pays tribute to the Daytona Black Cats, Red Wings, and other Negro League organizations in the city. As part of the celebration, fans are advised to arrive at the park early, as the first 1,000 fans will receive a limited-edition Daytona ‘The Nine’ cap giveaway. It will also be Cheer and Dance Night at the ballpark with special discounts for local athletes, coaches, and their families, as well as a pre-game performance by the Legacy Dance Studio. Saturday will also feature City of Daytona Beach Night including special discounted tickets for Daytona Beach residents.

RHP Chase Petty (NR) — the Reds' No. 7 prospect according to and a 2021 first-round pick — is expected to make his organizational debut in game two of the series for Daytona. St. Lucie is scheduled to counter with the Mets' No. 21 farmhand per RHP Mike Vasil (NR).

Season tickets, multi-game plans, group packages, and single-game tickets are currently available and can be purchased online at or by calling the Tortugas’ Ticket Office at (386) 257-3172.

The Daytona Tortugas are the Single-A Affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds and a member of Minor League Baseball’s Florida State League. The Tortugas play at Jackie Robinson Ballpark in downtown Daytona Beach, Fla. Jackie Robinson Ballpark also plays host to Bethune-Cookman University, the Jackie Robinson Ballpark Museum, and many community events and initiatives of all sizes throughout the year.