BRADENTON, Fla. - Drew Stankiewicz drove home the only run of the evening for Clearwater on a sacrifice fly in the second, as the Threshers suffered a 5-1, series-opening loss to the Bradenton Marauders at LECOM Park.
Clearwater (8-4) remains atop the Florida State League North, while Bradenton improved to a league-best 9-3.
Video: April 17, 2017: Game Highlights
The Marauders did most of their damage early, plating four runs in the first two innings against starter Blake Quinn.
With two on and one out following a walk and single in the first, Logan Hill knocked a base hit to right to score Cole Tucker with the night's first run.
Down 1-0, the Threshers evened it up in the second after Deivi Grullon ripped a double to right-center to lead off the frame.
Herlis Rodriguez reached on an error by first baseman Will Craig to put runners at the corners, and Stankiewicz lifted a sacrifice fly down the left field line to score Grullon and tie the game at one.
Bradenton again pulled ahead in the bottom half. After a walk, bunt single, and another walk loaded the bases, Alfredo Reyes pushed home the go-ahead on an RBI groundout, and Mitchell Tolman singled home two more to make it 4-1 Marauders.
It was the first game this season in which a Threshers starting pitcher has permitted more than three earned runs.
Despite surrendering four runs in the first two frames, Quinn settled in and attacked the strike zone through his final three innings.
The right-hander faced the minimum from the third through fifth frames, turning in a career-high five innings in his second start for Clearwater. Quinn (0-1) allowed four runs on five hits, walked three, and picked up two strikeouts.
Ranfi Casimiro turned in two perfect innings out of the Threshers bullpen. Bradenton's final run came against Edgar Garcia in the eighth, when with two down Tucker walked, swiped second, and scored on Craig's single to center.
Game two of the four-game set takes place at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, when Seranthony Dominguez (1-0) takes the hill opposed by Pedro Vasquez (0-0). The game will be broadcast live on threshersbaseball.com starting at 6:15 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.