DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — With Daytona trailing 2-0 going to the bottom of the third, the game was subsequently delayed for 48 minutes due to rain. Once the game resumed, the bats sprung to life. The Tortugas scored four in that bottom of the third and went on to defeat the Palm Beach Cardinals, 6-4, in front of 1,101 fans at Jackie Robinson Ballpark on Sunday evening.
Down a pair, once the game resumed CF Ashton Creal (0-3, R, 2 SO) quickly jump-started a rally with a hit-by-pitch. Following a single by SS José Torres (2-4, R, SO), DH Debby Santana (1-4, R, 2B, 3 RBI, SO) scalded the second pitch he saw into the alley in left-center for a double. Creal scored easily, while Torres got a great jump to score from first, tying the game at two.
The onslaught did not stop there, as 1B Leo Seminati (1-4, R, RBI, 2 SO) promptly poked a single into shallow right. Santana darted home from second to give Daytona (47-49) their first lead of the day, 3-2.
Following a strikeout and a pitching change, 3B Elly De La Cruz (1-4, 2B, RBI, SO) blasted the first delivery from the new pitcher into right for another knock. Seminati, who stole second, came around to cross on the 19-year-old's two-base hit to give the Tortugas a two-run advantage, 4-2.
An inning later, 2B Brandon Leyton (1-3, R, RBI, SO) started a rally on yet another leadoff hit-by-pitch. The León, Nicaragua native advanced to second on a balk and then took third on another single from Torres. With first and third and two out, Santana hit a ground ball to third. The play was made to first base, allowing Leyton to score, padding Daytona's edge to three, 5-2.
Palm Beach (30-62) chipped away with the long ball in the sixth. 1B Carlos Soto (1-4, R, HR, RBI, 2 SO) began the inning with a home run into the auxiliary parking lot beyond the right-field wall and CF Patrick Romeri (1-2, R, HR, RBI, 2 BB, SO) followed two pitches later by producing the same exact result. Soto's sixth home run and Romeri's fourth drew the Cardinals within one, 5-4.
That was as close as the visitors would get the rest of the way, though, as the 'Tugas added insurance in the eighth. LF Danny Lantigua (1-3, R, 2B, BB, SO) registered a hustle double into center with two out and Ruben Ibarra (0-0, BB) — who entered the game as a pinch-hitter — drew a walk.
On a 1-0 pitch, Leyton hit a broken-bat grounder through a hole on the left side of the infield for a hit. Lantigua raced home to score on the single, granting the Tortugas a two-run lead again, 6-4.
RHP Anthony Zimmerman (1.0 IP, SO) came on in the ninth and slammed the door shut. The former undrafted free agent signee out of Fordham University retired Palm Beach in order, as Leyton made a tremendous diving play to his left on the outfield turf to record the final out and Zimmerman's second save of the season.
Palm Beach captured the first two runs of the game in the top of the first on a LF Elijah Cabell (1-4, 2B, RBI, SO) double and a wild pitch.
RHP Miguel Medrano (4.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 4 SO) only allowed two hits — the pair of solo home runs in the sixth — over 4.0 innings of relief to accrue his third victory of the campaign. In a rain-shortened start, RHP Bryce Bonnin (3.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, ER, 2 BB, 5 SO) took a no-decision for Daytona.
Despite getting off to a good beginning, RHP Ludwin Jiménez (2.1 IP, 3 H, 4 R, 4 ER, BB, 4 SO) could not regain his form after the delay. The Palm Beach right-hander yielded four runs in that third inning and suffered his seventh defeat.
Following the league-wide off day on Monday, the Tortugas will pack up for a six-game road trip against the St. Lucie Mets, the Low-A affiliate of the New York Mets, starting on Tuesday evening. Neither team has announced a probable starter for the series opener. Coverage on the Tortugas Radio Network will begin on the MiLB First Pitch app and www.daytonatortugas.com at 5:55 p.m. leading up to the 6:10 p.m. first pitch from Clover Park.
The Tortugas will return home after the road trip to open up their final homestand of the season on Tuesday, August 31, against the Fort Myers Mighty Mussels, the Low-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins. It will be a Breast Cancer Awareness Night presented by Radiology Associates Imaging, as Daytona players and coaches will don special pink-tinted uniforms to mark the occasion. Silver Sluggers Night — the best club in baseball for fans 60-and-over — presented by Conviva Cares Solutions will also be a part of the festivities. Fans can get in on deals at the concession stand with $2.50 Michelob Ultra draft beers. Gates open at 6 p.m. and the first pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
Multi-game plans, group packages, and single-game tickets are currently available and can be purchased online at www.daytonatortugas.com or by calling the Tortugas’ Ticket Office at (386) 257-3172.
ABOUT THE DAYTONA TORTUGAS
The Daytona Tortugas are the Low-A Affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds and a member of Minor League Baseball’s Low-A Southeast. The Tortugas play at Jackie Robinson Ballpark in downtown Daytona Beach. Jackie Robinson Ballpark also plays host to Bethune-Cookman University, the Jackie Robinson Ballpark Museum, and many community events and initiatives of all sizes throughout the year.