Game Story: Bradenton Wins Sloppy contest against Fort Myers 8-2

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For the second straight day the contest between the Bradenton Marauders and Fort Myers Mighty Mussels was delayed due to rain. Once things got under way the home team rode a career performance from Luis Ortiz to victory.

For the third time in two days Aaron Sabato hit a home run for Fort Myers, getting the road team on the board early in the first inning. 

It was all Ortiz from that point forward, as he struck out a career high 11 batters while pitching 6 1/3 innings of one run, three hit baseball. Using a nasty fastball/slider combination, Ortiz generated 22 swing and misses through out his outing.

Bradenton hitters didn't have to do too much in order to take back the lead, as Fort Myers' starter Landon Leach greatly struggled with his control. He surrendered the lead in the bottom of the first inning without giving up a hit.

The Marauders put two on the board after getting hit by pitches three times, and then walking another two times. Maikol Escotto scored the first run of the game for Bradenton on a balk.

In total, Leach walked three batters and hit another five in just two innings of work.

Ortiz took full advantage of Fort Myers giving away the lead and gave way to Justin Meis out of the bullpen, who worked out of a bases loaded jam in the seventh, and then limited the damage to one in a first and third with nobody out the following frame.

In his home debut for the Marauders, the Pirates 10th round pick in this past draft pitched 1 2/3 innings, allowed one hit, one unearned run, walked one and struck out another.

Oliver Mateo rounded things out with a scoreless ninth innings, striking out two to close out the game.

While it may have been the Mussels that shot themselves in the foot and gave up the lead, when the Marauders needed to come through for themselves, they did. Dariel Lopez and Jack Herman both hit RBI triples on the night.

Endy Rodriguez found a way between walking three times to hit an RBI single. Jase Bowen and Alexander Mojica also drove in runs on the night.

Other notes from the game

-While what Fort Myers did at the beginning of the game certainly did a big part in handing the game away, Bradenton didn't play a clean sheet on the night.

Bradenton committed another four errors on the night and according to the Marauders announcer, Spenser Smith, they have over 100 on the season. Moscotto (17) and Lopez (23) are two of their biggest offenders this year, and both committed one a piece.

-Bowen and Escotto each stole a base, giving them 12 and 15 on the season, respectively. There are six players in the Pirates system with double digits in both home runs and stolen bases, Bowen is one of them. Escotto has an outside chance to join that club, sitting at seven home runs on the season, with about six weeks left in the season.

-Bradenton and Fort Myers continue their series on Thursday with first pitch expected around 6:05 pm. The last two games were delayed due to rain, so I guess we will see.

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