Daytona Beach, FL - After three-straight rainouts, the Daytona Cubs edged the Lakeland Flying Tigers 2-1 in 12 innings, thanks to a 3B Jeimer Candelario walk-off home run on Sunday at Radiology Associates Field at Jackie Robinson Ballpark.
With the game knotted up at 1-1 in the 12th, Candelario took a 1-1 fastball from LHP Alex Burgos (L, 0-1) and deposited it off the scoreboard in left-center field to end the game. Candelario also made two fantastic defensive plays at third base, including a run-saving stop and throw in the 12th with a runner on third in the 1-1 game.
Daytona scored first thanks to a leadoff double from 2B Gioskar Amaya in the first inning, a productive groundout from Candelario that advanced Amaya to third, and a CF Albert Almora sacrifice fly. The 1-0 lead held all the way until the eighth inning.
In the eighth, after producing just one single through the first seven innings, the Flying Tigers got a one-out single from 1B James Robbins off RHP Michael Jensen. After a fielder's choice, 3B Tyler Hanover singled to put runners on the corners with two outs. After starting C Drew Longley 0-2 in his plate appearance, Jensen checked Hanover over at first base, but after bouncing the ball over to first baseman Dan Vogelbach, Robbins came down to score the game-tying run.
Daytona got six shutout innings from starter RHP Felix Pena. Pena allowed just a hit with a walk and three strikeouts. The 24 year-old threw only 63 pitches. Pena, who lowered his ERA to 1.29 on the season, has not allowed more than one earned run in any of his six starts this year.
Jensen allowed the unearned run on two hits over his two innings of work.
RHP Arodys Vizcaino tossed a perfect ninth with two strikeouts to carry the game to extra innings.
RHP Stephen Perakslis (W, 1-0) shut down the Flying Tigers in extras. In his three innings, Perakslis allowed two hits with no walks and three strikeouts.
The two teams combined for just nine hits, and Hanover had the lone multi-hit game for either side.
The 12 inning game was played in just two hours and 47 minutes.
Daytona and Lakeland will play game two of the three-game series on Monday night at Jackie Robinson Ballpark. First pitch on Belly-Buster Monday is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.