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Sour Sunday sees Daytona drop a pair to Jupiter

Cerda's two-homer finale not enough, as Jupiter takes suspended game, 3-0, win nightcap in extras, 9-8
CF Allan Cerda picked up his second multi-home run game of the season in the nightcap, but the Jupiter Hammerheads won the suspended game from Saturday, 3-0, and took Sunday's seven-inning finale, 9-8, in eight innings in front of 854 fans at Jackie Robinson Ballpark. (Aldrin Capulong)
August 15, 2021

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The Tortugas appeared on their way to a series victory before things went awry. After dropping the opener, Saturday's suspended game, 3-0, Daytona held a 7-1 lead going into the fourth of game two. However, the Jupiter Hammerheads rallied to stun the 'Tugas in eight innings,

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The Tortugas appeared on their way to a series victory before things went awry. After dropping the opener, Saturday's suspended game, 3-0, Daytona held a 7-1 lead going into the fourth of game two. However, the Jupiter Hammerheads rallied to stun the 'Tugas in eight innings, 9-8, in front of 854 fans at Jackie Robinson Ballpark on Sunday evening.

Jupiter (44-43) held a 1-0 lead on a first-inning SS Bennett Hostetler (1-3, RBI, SO) sacrifice fly before the game was suspended on Saturday night with a man at third and one out in the bottom of the fourth. RHP Joey Steele (2.2 IP, 7 SO) entered out of the bullpen to begin the resumption and struck out both batters he faced to strand the tying run at third.

In the top of the fifth, the Hammerheads added to their one-run margin. 2B Angeudis Santos (2-4, R, 2B) started the frame with a single to left and moved to second on a wild pitch before swiping third base. With one out, 3B Cody Morissette (1-4, R, RBI, BB) ripped a single to left to push the visitors lead to 2-0.

After Morissette advanced to second on the play courtesy of a fielding error, DH Victor Mesa Jr. (1-4, RBI, BB, SO) poked another base-hit through the left side. The 2021 second-round pick dashed around from second to score on the single to pad Jupiter's advantage to three.

That was all the run support the Hammerheads' pitching needed. Steele worked through the sixth before handing the baton to RHP Sean Reynolds (2.0 IP, H, 2 SO). In the ninth, LHP Chandler Jozwiak (1.0 IP, H, SO) recorded the final three outs of the nine-inning affair to garner the first save of his professional career. Steele was granted his third victory in relief.

RHP Eury Pérez (3.1 IP, 2 H, BB, 5 SO) made the start for Jupiter on Saturday but took a no-decision as a result of the game being suspended. Daytona's RHP Gabriel Aguilera (4.0 IP, 2 H, R, ER, 2 BB, 2 SO) issued only one run in his start yet suffered his second full-season defeat.

In the nightcap, the Hammerheads struck first, as well. RF Tanner Allen (1-4, R, 3B, RBI) punched the first pitch of the ballgame for a triple to right and scored on a fielder's choice off the bat of 3B Bennett Hostetler (0-3, R, RBI, 2 SO).

Trailing 1-0, Daytona (44-46) started utilizing the long ball in the second. The Tortugas loaded the bags with one out courtesy of a 1B Ruben Ibarra (1-4, R, 2 SO) single, a walk to 3B Leo Seminati (2-3, 2 R, HR, RBI, BB, SO) and a plunking of SS Brandon Leyton (1-3, R, 2B).

On a 2-2 pitch, LF Blake Dunn (2-3, R, HR, 4 RBI) cracked a drive to deep center field that sailed into the Magnolia parking lot. The grand slam was the first home run in the career of Cincinnati's 15th-round selection in July's MLB Draft. Additionally, the first grand slam clubbed by a Tortuga in 2021 gave the squad a 4-1 lead.

Two batters later, C Daniel Vellojín (1-4, R, HR, RBI, 2 SO) golfed a shot that snuck out just between the center-field wall and the batter's eye in dead center. The Cartagena, Colombia native's fifth home run of the campaign padded the Daytona advantage to four, 5-1.

In the third, the Tortugas continued to tee off. CF Allan Cerda (2-4, 2 R, 2 HR, 2 RBI, SO) punished the first pitch of the inning beyond the left-field wall for a solo home run, his team-leading 11th of the year. After a ground out and strikeout, it was Seminati's turn. The 22-year-old sent one flying out past the batting cages in straightaway left for another solo blast. Leo's eighth home run put Daytona in charge by six, 7-1.

However, Jupiter ignited their comeback effort in the fourth. A run-producing fielder's choice by C Paul McIntosh (2-4, R, HR, 5 RBI) cut it to 7-2 and, an inning later, 2B Cody Morissette (1-5, 2B, RBI, SO) smashed an RBI double to draw the Hammerheads within four, 7-3.

The first two men reached in the sixth before McIntosh — making his Jupiter debut — demolished an offering that disappeared behind the manual scoreboard in left for a three-run clout. The West Virginia University alum's first professional home run trimmed the six-run deficit down to one, 7-6.

Daytona was within one strike of victory on two occasions in the seventh, but couldn't quite seal the deal. After walking LF Javeon Cody (0-2, 2 R, 2 BB, SO) with two strikes, the 'Tugas had 1B Marcus Chiu (3-4, R, RBI, SO) with two balls and two strikes. However, the 24-year-old would slap a game-tying single to left and McIntosh followed with a go-ahead knock through the left side.

In the bottom of the seventh, Jupiter was unable to close it out, too. Behind in the count 0-2, Cerda pushed a towering fly ball out to right-center field for a game-tying solo home run. The 21-year-old's second of the game and 12th of the year — in addition to his second multi-homer contest in as many weeks — knotted the game up at eight.

With a man at second due to the international tiebreaker rules in effect for extra innings, the Hammerheads garnered a leadoff single from SS Dalvy Rosario (2-4, R) and regained the lead, 9-8, on a subsequent sacrifice fly to center by Allen.

Daytona had their chance in the bottom half, but could not find similar luck. Following a sacrifice bunt that moved the tying run to third, Elly De La Cruz stepped up to pinch-hit and hit a 105 mph rocket. However, RHP Robinson Martínez (2.0 IP, 2 H, R, ER, 2 SO) snared the line drive and doubled Leyton off of third base to end the game.

Martínez, despite suffering a blown save in the seventh, earned his first win as a member of the Miami Marlins organization on Sunday. RHP Jake Gozzo (1.0 IP, H, R) yielded just an unearned run in the eighth but was still saddled with his fourth defeat.

Neither starter received a decision, as well. Tortugas RHP Jason Parker (5.0 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 5 SO) left in line for his fifth victory, but the bullpen could not hold it. The Hammerheads' offense picked up RHP Chris Mokma (5.0 IP, 8 H, 7 R, 7 ER, BB, 4 SO) who surrendered four home runs on Sunday.

After the league-wide off day on Monday, Daytona will remain at home for another six games against the Palm Beach Cardinals, the Low-A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals. It will be a Breast Cancer Awareness Night presented by Radiology Associates Imaging, as Daytona players and coaches will don special pink-tinted uniforms to mark the occasion. Silver Sluggers Night — the best club in baseball for fans 60-and-over — presented by Conviva Cares Solutions will also be a part of the festivities. Fans can get in on deals at the concession stand with $2.50 Michelob Ultra draft beers.

Neither club has announced a probable starting pitcher for Tuesday's series opener. Gates will open at 6 p.m. Coverage on the Tortugas Radio Network will begin on the MiLB First Pitch app and at 6:50 p.m. leading up to the 7:05 p.m. first pitch from Jackie Robinson Ballpark.

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 Low-A Affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds and a member of Minor League Baseball’s Low-A Southeast. The Tortugas play at Jackie Robinson Ballpark in downtown Daytona Beach. 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.