Clearwater Threshers Bite Back; Port St. Lucie Mets 6-2 Loss Creates Three Way Tie For Division Lead

By Michael Lecolant

We now have a three way tie for first place in the Florida State League South Division.  With identical 23-17 second-half records, the Charlotte Stone Crabs, Palm Beach Cardinals and Port St. Lucie Mets all sit atop the standings, with the Fort Myers Miracle just 1.5 games behind.  The deadlock was created when both Charlotte and the Mets lost in Sunday’s action, while Palm Beach won their game.

Mar 14, 2013; Clearwater Beach, FL, USA; A detail of a major league baseball at Clearwater Beach. Spring Training for MLB is held throughout the Florida from early February to late March annually. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Today in Game Three against the Clearwater Threshers, Rainy Lara labored through seven innings of work, allowing four earned runs on five hits, including a home run.  He walked one batter and struck out two before departing the game on the losing side.  Lara was outdone by his opponent, Clearwater starter Hoby Milner, who pitched seven full and allowed just one earned run on five hits.  He walked one batter and struck out two.  Milner improved his record to 10-5 on the season.

Port St. Lucie scored in the first.  Kyle Johnson led-off the home first with a single.  He later came around to score when Lucas Duda grounded into a 4-6-3 double-play with no outs.  But the Mets remained scoreless for the next seven innings against Clearwater pitching.  The Threshers scored a pair in the third and seventh innings, and picked up one more in the eighth.  St. Lucie managed one more run in the bottom of the ninth when Kevin Plawecki made it a 6-2 game with an RBI single, but that was all they’d get.

  • Lucas Duda was 0 for 4 at the plate, and is now batting .250, with seven hits in twenty-eight at-bats for Port St. Lucie.

After dropping the first two games of this series to Port St. Lucie, the Clearwater Threshers aim to gain a split Monday with a win in Game Four.  Domingo Tapia will climb the hill for St. Lucie, and will be opposed by the Threshers Nicholas Hernandez.

Domingo will be making his nineteenth start of the season, all with St. Lucie.  He’ll bring a 4.29 ERA and a 2-7 record into Monday’s game.  The right-hander has done well allowing sixty-nine hits in 79.2 innings pitched, and only three home runs while striking out out seventy-one batters, but has walked a lofty forty-five batters.  He’ll bring a 1.431 WHiP into the game, his highest mark in four minor league seasons.

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