VIERA, Fla. - Aaron Nola picked up his first professional victory in a 3-0 Threshers win in game one, and Mark Leiter, Jr. earned his first victory in a Threshers' uniform as Clearwater completed the doubleheader sweep over the Brevard County Manatees on Monday evening with a 7-3 win.
Nola (1-1), made his first professional relief appearance after he took over for big-league rehabber Cliff Lee, whose outing was cut short after Sunday night's game was suspended.
The 2014 first-round pick worked efficiently against the Manatees' lineup, throwing first-pitch strikes to 14 of the 16 batters he faced. Through his five innings of work, the righty surrendered just one hit and struck out five. It was the second straight outing in which Nola gave up just one hit in four or more innings.
Game one began on Sunday evening with Lee making his first rehab start since being placed on the DL on May 20 with an elbow strain. The lefty gave up a lead-off single to Nathan Orf, but that would be the only blemish on his line as he worked two innings and struck out two in his start.
JP Crawford lifted his third home run of the season, a two-run shot over the left field wall to give the Threshers a 2-0 lead in the third, just before the rain came and suspended the contest.
When play resumed on Monday, Clearwater took advantage of a one-out double by Anthony Phillips in the fifth.
With Phillips on second, Manatees' backstop Cameron Garfield's pickoff attempt to second sailed into centerfield, advancing the base runner to third.
Roman Quinn then smacked a sacrifice fly to center to plate Phillips and give the Threshers a 3-0 lead.
Nola would finish the contest having allowed only one base runner in his five innings, working a perfect bottom of the seventh to seal the game-one win.
Clearwater (7-10) erupted in the first inning of game two, pushing across four runs on two hits to take the early lead.
Quinn was hit by a pitch to start the game, and reached third on a fielder's choice by Crawford.
Everett Williams doubled in Quinn, but was erased when trying to advance to third on a grounder to the right side by Brandon Short.
Art Charles followed with a walk, and Brian Pointer cranked out a three-run jack over the left field wall to put the Threshers up 4-0.
Brevard County (10-5) grabbed three of those runs back in the third off of Leiter (1-0).
The righty gave up back-to-back singles to Parker Berberet and Jose Sermo before getting Orf to ground into a 6-4-3 double play. A walk to Orlando Arcia put runners on the corners.
Tyrone Taylor's infield double off the glove of Phillips brought in Berberet from third and Michael Reed's two-run single brought the Manatees within a run.
The Threshers would answer with three runs in the fifth to put the game away.
Phillips, Quinn, and Crawford all reached on singles to load the bases with nobody out for Williams, who ripped a two-run single to right.
Short then sent a sac fly to center to score Crawford from third and give the Threshers the 7-3 advantage.
Manatees' pitcher Mark Williams was ejected in the seventh after brushing back Crawford with a fastball. Both benches and bullpens came onto the field and the game was brought to a brief delay.
Williams was not the only player ejected. In the midst of the scuffle, two more Manatees were tossed in Arcia and Sermo, as well as two Threshers, Corey Bass and Pointer.
The Threshers will head back home to take on the Tampa Yankees on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. The game can be heard live starting at 6:45 p.m. on threshersbaseball.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.