[This article was written by Jim Donten, our Charlotte Stone Crabs correspondent.]
The Game: The Stone Crabs finish out the series against St. Lucie on a sour note as they lose a close game 8-7 in 12 innings at Tradition Field. The Stone Crabs jumped out to a lead in the first inning when Matt Fields singles to center to score Emeel Salem. They added to their lead in the second inning when Emeel Salem singled home Pedro Powell to put Charlotte ahead 2-0.
St. Lucie came back to tie the game in the bottom of the third when Ike Davis hit an RBI double to score Reese Havens and the very next batter Zachary Lutz picks up an RBI single scoring Davis. The Mets scored the go ahead run in the fourth inning Jacob Eigsti delivered an RBI single to center, putting St. Lucie ahead 3-2.
The Stone Crabs come back with a four run sixth inning. The inning got started off back to back singles by Gregory Sexton and Shawn Williams. St. Lucie pitcher Nicholas Waechter then issued back to back walks, one Cody Cipriano to load the bases and another to Pedro Powell to score Sexton. St. Lucie goes to the bullpen to try and get out of the inning without any further damage. But Shawn O’Malley has other plans, delivering a bases loaded, 3-run double to put the Stone Crabs ahead 6-3.
But St. Lucie is not finished yet, coming up with a four run of their own in the bottom of the bottom of the sixth. Rafael Arroyo began the inning with a double to left field. Brahiam Maldonado got aboard on a walk and Jacob Eigsti singled to load the bases. Greg Veloz and Reese Havens both then drove home two runs with a singles, putting St. Lucie back on top 7-6.
The Stone Crabs scored a run in the ninth inning when Stephen Vogt singled to center to score Reid Fronk, tying the game 7-7 and forcing extra innings. St. Lucie won the game in the bottom of the twelfth inning when Brahiam Maldonado scores on a wild pitch by Kevin Boggan.
The starter Jesse Darcy pitched 4 innings surrendering 3 runs off 8 hits while striking out 6. Justin Garcia pitched 1 inning giving up 4 runs on 4 hits with 2 walks and a strike out. Paul Phillips and Austin Hinkle pitched 3 scoreless innings a piece. Kevin Boggan was the losing pitcher, pitching 2/3 of an inning and giving up the game winning run. Edgar Ramirez was the winning pitcher for St. Lucie.
What Went Right: The offense; delivered 7 runs off 12 hits keeping the Stone Crabs in the game. Emeel Salem; 3-6 with a walk and RBI.
What Went Wrong: Runners in scoring position; 5-19 RISP. Matt Fields; struck out 3 times.
A Look Ahead: The Stone Crabs travel to Palm Beach for a three game series against the division leading Palm Beach Cardinals (6-1).