Tampa Pitchers throw combined one-hitter in 1-0 victory over Bradenton
TAMPA, Fla. - The lucky number was one Saturday night at George M. Steinbrenner Field. One run, one hit given up, and one victory. After a thirty-minute rain delay, the Tampa Tarpons (10-16) combined to throw a one-hitter to take down the Bradenton Marauders (16-10). After only making it through
TAMPA, Fla. - The lucky number was one Saturday night at George M. Steinbrenner Field. One run, one hit given up, and one victory. After a thirty-minute rain delay, the Tampa Tarpons (10-16) combined to throw a one-hitter to take down the Bradenton Marauders (16-10).
After only making it through 3.2 innings in his last start, RHP Justin Lange (5.0IP, 3BB, 10K) was brilliant against the Marauders. Manager Rachel Balkovec pulled Lange after five miraculous no-hit innings. Lange had the strikeout pitch working, racking up ten strikeouts while relying on his sinker. He used it 52% of the time, and it sat around 95 MPH. The most impressive pitch for Lange was his cutter. He had an absurd whiff rate of 75% on the night.
Tampa got their first baserunner in the second inning when LF Nelson Medina drew a free pass. 1B Omar Martinez laced a 110 MPH to right field to put runners on the corners. 3B Ronny Rojas bounced a ball to Alexander Mojica, who started a 3-6-1 double play to get Bradenton out of the jam. Rojas thought he beat out the play, throwing his hands up in surprise as field umpire Chad Lagana emphatically made the out call at first base.
Lange lost his control a bit in the fifth. He walked Enmaneul Terrero and hit Mojica to open the inning. Javier Rivas popped up a bunt to C Agustin Ramirez and RF Felix Negueis made a sensational running play into the side wall to secure the second out; Terrero tagged to third. With Bradenton looking to strike first, Lange dotted a 97 MPH fastball to strikeout Jesus Castillo and hold the game scoreless.
RHP Mason Vinyard relieved Lange after five no-hit innings and immediately walked Rodolfo Nolasco. Termarr Johnson, the fourth overall pick in the 2022 MLB Draft, struck out swinging and got into it with home plate umpire Shea Graham. He did not like a call earlier in the count and ended up getting ejected for arguing.
The Marauders broke up the no-hitter in the seventh when Mojica ripped a double down the left-field line. He would not make it any further, as Rivas went down swinging to end the frame.
A walk in the park—that was the difference in the game for Tampa in the seventh. Back-to-back one-out walks ignited the Tarpons’ rally in the seventh. A double steal from Medina and Martinez moved the runners to second and third base. Negueis worked the third walk of the inning to load the bases for SS Brenny Escanio. Escanio was patient and watched four straight balls to walk in the go-ahead run. The fourth walk of the inning brought in the first and only run of the game, gifting Tampa a one-run lead.
Bradenton opened the ninth inning with two soft grounders back to RHP Alex Bustamante. Bustamante lost the strike zone and walked the next two batters to give Bradenton hope. RHP Matt Keating entered looking for the save and was able to nail it down as he got Rivas to ground out to short.
The Tarpons will face the Marauders in the final game of the series tomorrow afternoon. First pitch is set for 12:00 p.m. with RHP Baron Stuart on the hill for Tampa.