MOREHEAD CITY, NC – In front of a huge crowd of 2,019 fans, the Marlins provided plenty of fireworks on the diamond before the actual fireworks went off after the 8-6 win over the Wilson Tobs. They’ve now won 5 straight CPL East games this week.
“Things are really coming together for us,” Marlins head coach Jesse Lancaster said. “We didn’t pitch quite as well tonight as we did last night (in Wilmington), but sometimes your offense has to bail you out and that’s what happened tonight. We’re seeing the buy-in.”
Wilson struck first in the top of the 1st inning on an RBI single from Drew DeVine off Marlins righty starter Justin Kleinsorge (Regis). The Marlins did not waste much time to respond back, as Zack Miller (Catawba) started his monster night at the plate with a towering home run over the left field fence to knot things up at 1 in the bottom of the 2nd inning.
Miller then followed that up with an RBI single in the 3rd inning, driving in Phillip Glasser (Youngstown State), who also had 3 hits on the night. It was 2-1 Marlins at that point.
Then, the floodgates opened.
After the Tobs tied the game at 2 in the top of the 4th inning, the Marlins went to work in the bottom of the 4th. Gibson Krzeminski (Canisius) led things off with a walk (today was also Gibson’s 23rd birthday), Dom Bucko (Youngstown State) singled, Justin Johnson walked, and Krzeminski came home on an RBI single from Glasser. Joe Mason (Mount Olive) reached on an error on a rocket to left field, Jack Harris (Newberry) got hit by a pitch, and then Miller unloaded another bomb to left field, this one of the 3-run variety. The Marlins scored 6 runs in the bottom of the 4th and took a 8-2 lead to the fifth inning.
The Tobs then began to methodically chip away at the lead, adding two runs in the fifth, one in the sixth, and one in the eighth. Tobs shortstop Gary Mattis hit two home runs during that stretch.
Kleinsorge got the start, going 3 and 2/3 innings allowing 5 hits, 2 earned runs and racking up 5 strikeouts. Colt Webb (Charleston-WV) got the win, going 1 and 2/3 innings allowing one earned run with 2 strikeouts. Webb got out of a huge bases loaded jam in the 6th inning. Joe Barberio (Canisius) pitched a scoreless inning, and Brendan Bean (Penn) got his second save of the summer.
Miller went 3 for 4 with 2 home runs and 5 RBI, earning himself the CPL Line of the Night. Lancaster was most proud of his leadership.
“Zack was great for us at the plate tonight, but I really like how he’s been leading since he’s been here,” he said. “Once he and Jack (Harris) reunited, those two have kind of become the natural leaders of the team, and we’re better for it.”
Miller’s just taking it one day at a time.
“I was happy with my at-bats tonight,” he said. “I was patient enough to see some good pitches, the two home run balls were basically the same pitch.”
On the leadership part of it: “Yeah, we’re just having fun man. We’re here to win and take care of business, but this group of guy is really coming together and it’s fun.”
The Marlins finish up their huge week of CPL East play on the road in Florence, SC tomorrow night as they make the trip to take on the RedWolves for the first time this season. First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 PM.