BRADENTON – The Marauders (45-41, 10-7) blistered the St. Lucie Mets (52-33, 12-4) with 15 hits, securing an 11-5 win on Tuesday night at McKechnie Field. Chad Kuhl (W, 9-5) was the recipient of that run support, moving into a tie for the league lead in wins while pitching seven innings and surrendering just two hits and two runs. Kuhl issued a season high four walks, but also struck out four batters, all looking. St. Lucie’s eight-game winning streak ended in the loss.
Bradenton finally solved Michael Fulmer (L, 3-8). The righty had pitched the Mets to three wins over Bradenton this season. The Mets handed Fulmer a 1-0 lead in the first inning, but the Marauders scored the next six runs of the game. Walker Gourley, Raul Fortunato, and Adam Frazier each drove in a run in the bottom of the second to put Bradenton up 3-1. Gourley and Frazier struck again in the sixth with run-scoring hits that extended the lead to 6-1.
The Mets dinged Kuhl for a second run in the seventh inning to trim the lead to 6-2, the University of Delaware product got a double play grounder to limit the damage. The Marauders exploded for five more runs over the final two turns at bat. Bryton Trepagnier pitched a scoreless eighth inning for Bradenton, and Jhondaniel Medina mopped up in the ninth.
Frazier, Fortunato, and Jin-De Jhang all had three hits on the night for Bradenton. Eight of the nine Marauders starters recorded at least one hit. Frazier drove in three runs, while Gourley and Jhang drove in two each.
Game two of the series is Wednesday night at McKechnie Field. First pitch is at 6:30 p.m. and gates open at 5:30 p.m. John Kuchno will start for the Marauders against Kevin McGowan of the Mets.
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