The Clearwater Threshers were in the game last night until the Dunedin Blue Jays Blue closed it out with three runs in the ninth inning in a 7-3 win. The game had many odd statistics for a nine inning game:
- Four Threshers’ pitchers struck out 19 batters compared to 11 strikeouts for Blue Jays pitching.
- Each team had a batter take a “golden sombrero” by striking four times. Two other Threshers struck out three times and seven Blue Jays struck out twice.
- Blue Jays batters individually left 28 batters on base while the Threshers individually left only 5 runners on base.
- The Blue Jays went 2 for 16 with runners in scoring position while the Threshers were only 1 for 4 with RISP.
- Threshers pitchers combined to walk 10 batters while the Blue Jays pitchers walked only one.
- Threshers starting pitcher Damon Jones was pulled after three innings with a no-hitter and eight strikeouts but threw 75 pitchers.
- The Threshers took a 3-1 lead into the sixth inning only to see the Blue Jays score three times and three more times in the ninth.
- The Threshers are off to a slow start going 0-2 and being outscored 18-5 after the first two games of the season.
The game was more lopsided than it seemed with the Threshers down by only a run going into the ninth inning. The sixth inning was turning point in the game when the Blue Jays catcher Riley Adams drilled a two out double to give the Jays a 4-3 lead off of Luis Carrasco. Carrasco had pitched well until the Threshers manager, Marty Malloy tried to get a third inning of work out of the him. He was simply out of gas but Malloy let him pitch to Adams with two out and the bases loaded in the sixth inning.
A highlight for the Threshers was the eight strikeout performance by Jones but all his strikeouts and his four walks drove up his pitch count. He was taken out with a quick hook by the perplexing Threshers manager after only three innings.
Jones struck out the side in the first and second innings and had two more strikeouts in the third. See his work in the first inning HERE.
Only a wild throw by catcher Cabral on a base steal of third by a runner who had walked in the second inning allowed an unearned Blue Jays run to score in Jones three innings of work.
Threshers Matt Vierling homered down the line in left in the fourth and Simon Muzziotti hit a two-run double to left in the fifth to give the Threshers a temporary 3-1 lead, watch HERE.
It was a strange game to say the least. The Threshers will go back at it against the Blue Jays tonight at 6:30 at Spectrum Field and tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. when Florida State League baseball returns to Jack Russell Stadium in Clearwater after a 15 year hiatus. It is the temporary home field of the Jays for the 2019 season.