The St. Lucie Mets (8-10) put up a five run first inning and waited out a 100-minute rain delay midway through the game to defeat the Bradenton Marauders (11-7) 9-3 Sunday night at McKechnie Field. A heavy thunderstorm rolled through Sarasota and Bradenton causing the game to be stopped for nearly two hours between the fifth and sixth innings.
Marauders starter Matt Benedict’s (0-3) gave up five runs on four hits including a three-run homer by the Mets Rafael Fernandez and did not last past the first inning.
Tyler Pill (2-1) pitched four hitless innings for St. Lucie until the Marauders got a pair of singles in the fifth frame. Carlos Paulino scored on a double play grounder. Paulino finished the game 3-3 with a double and two runs scored. Pill earned his second win of the season for the Mets.
St. Lucie scored two runs in the eighth and two more in the ninth off Marauders reliever Zach Foster. Rafael Fernandez added an RBI-triple in the eighth inning and T.J.Rivera homered in the ninth.
Mel Rojas Jr. blasted his fourth home run of the season off Hamilton Bennett in the eighth inning. Kenn Kasparek pitched four shutout innings in relief of starter Matt Benedict. Dan Grovatt extended his hitting streak to 12 straight games with a double in the sixth.
The Marauders and Mets wrap up their series tonight (Monday) at McKechnie Field beginning at the earlier 5:00 p.m. first pitch. Casey Sadler gets the start for Bradenton against St. Lucie’s Yohan Almonte.