Brevard County Manatees Break Three-Game Slide
By Brevard County Manatees // May 17, 2014
stellar performance by Jorge Lopez
JUPITER, FLORIDA – Behind another stellar performance by Jorge Lopez and a big, two-out hit byCameron Garfield, the Brevard County Manatees ended their three-game losing streak by defeating the Jupiter Hammerheads, 4-1 at Roger Dean Stadium on Friday night.
With the game scoreless in the top of the sixth inning, the Manatees (21-18) got a lead-off single by Nathan Orf. The next batter, Orlando Arcia, hit a tailor-made double play ball to short. The Manatees though managed to stay out of the twin killing as Orf took off on the pitch, to put a runner at second with one out.
A fly out by Tyrone Taylor advanced Orf to third with two outs for Garfield. On the first pitch he saw, Garfield roped a double down the left field line to score Orf and put Brevard County in front, 1-0.
However, it looked the lead might be short lived. With one on and two out in the bottom of the inning, Lopez (5-2, 3.51 ERA) worked himself into a bit of a jam.
On a 2-0 pitch, Austin Barnes singled to center, which was followed by a five-pitch walk to Colin Moran. The right-hander buckled down and struck out Jesus Solorzano on three pitches to end the frame and leave the bases loaded.
That capped off Lopez’s night. The former second round pick recorded his fourth consecutive victory, as he shut out the Hammerheads (19-22) on five hits, walked two and striked out five over six innings. The victory ties Lopez for the Florida State League lead with five victories.
The ‘Tees rode the momentum of Lopez’s inning-ending strikeout into the top of the seventh. With one out, Alfredo Rodriguez singled, stole second base and then advanced to third on a wild pitch.
With the infield drawn in, Garrett Cooper would ground a ball back up the middle and past the glove of Noah Perio, extending Brevard’s lead to 2-0.
Two pitches later, Yadiel Rivera smoked a line drive down the right field line. The shortstop motored into third with an RBI triple – his second three-bagger of the year – to push the ‘Tees lead to three. Orf followed with a sacrifice fly, giving Brevard a comfortable 4-0 advantage.
Jupiter got their only run of the night in the bottom of the frame. With one out, Perio hit his first home run of the year, well over the right field wall, to cut Brevard’s lead to 4-1.
Looking to end their skid, closer Tanner Poppe came on in the eighth for a multi-inning save.
After walking the first batter he faced, the right-hander retired the next six batters in a row, forcing a ground out back to the mound to end the game. The save is Poppe’s ninth of the year, giving him the second most in the FSL.
Jupiter’s starter Austin Brice (3-4, 4.93) took the loss for the Hammerheads. He tied a career-high by striking out nine Manatee hitters over six innings of work. The righty allowed just one run and four hits on the night.
The Manatees and Hammerheads will battle again tomorrow in the second game of this four-game series, with first pitch scheduled for 6:35 p.m.
Brevard County will call upon left-hander Hobbs Johnson (3-4, 2.84), who struck out a career-high nine batters in his last outing in Daytona. Fellow 2013 draftee Trevor Williams (5-3, 3.18) will get the start for Jupiter, looking to break his tie with Lopez for the league lead in wins.