5/12/15

Tampa 4 - St. Lucie 2

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The St. Lucie Mets dropped their sixth game in a row, this time in gut wrenching fashion to the Tampa Yankees, 4-2, on Monday at Tradition Field.

The Mets (13-18) took a 2-1 lead to the top of the ninth and handed the ball to the rehabbing Bobby Parnell. After getting the first batter out, Parnell gave up a single, walked a batter and threw a wild pitch. That brought up Mike Ford, who doubled home two runs to put the Yankees up 3-2. Ford later scored on another wild pitch.

It was the second blown save for Parnell in as many games for St. Lucie. He could not hold a 1-0 lead in the last inning against Jupiter on April 21 and the Mets lost 3-1 in extra innings. That was the last time Parnell pitched, as his rehab was shut down afterwards.

The loss spoiled another terrific performance from Robert Gsellman, who was named the Florida State League Pitcher of the Week earlier in the day. Gsellman went eight innings and allowed five hits and one run. He did not walk a batter and struck out five.

Gsellman’s one mistake came in the fifth when he gave up an RBI double to Ericson Leonora on an 0-2 pitch with two outs. He recovered to retire the next 10 batters in a row to finish his outing.

The Mets offense was quiet again and did not provide much run support for Gsellman. The Mets scored their first run in the fifth thanks to back-to-back errors with one out that put runners at the corners. Yeixon Ruiz grounded out to bring home Phil Evans and tie the game.

The Mets broke the tie in the seventh. Maikis De La Cruz hit a broken-bat RBI infield single with the bases loaded that gave the Mets the 2-1 advantage.

Overall, the Mets stranded 10 base runners.

Evans went 2 for 3 and scored both Mets runs. He had been on the disabled since the start of the season.

Yankees starter Conner Kendrick entered the game with an 8.47 ERA. However, he limited the struggling Mets offense to one hit and one unearned run in five innings.

Evan Rutckyj was credited with the victory. Angel Rincon got Michael Conforto to ground out as the tying run to end the game. Team press release

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