The Fort Myers Miracle knocked off the Charlotte Stone Crab 8-5 Thursday night at Hammond Stadium.
Daniel Santana busted a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the fourth inning with a three-run homer off Charlotte starter Braulio Lara. After back-to-back singles to begin the inning by Anderson Hidalgo and Mike Gonzales, Santana jumped on the first pitch from Lara (4-8) and lifted a majestic fly over the left field fence to give the Miracle a 5-3 lead.
In the seventh inning, the Miracle added three insurance runs led by Danny Ortiz. The first hitter of the inning, Ortiz blasted his fourth homerun of the season on a 2-2 pitch from Stone Crab reliever Chris Andujar. Ortiz finished the game 3-for-4, picking up multiple hits in his four of the last five games.
Michael Gonzales added a bases loaded walk for a run batted in and Anderson Hidalgo scored on a Chris Rearick wild pitch to complete a three-run seventh and push Fort Myers lead to 8-3.
The Stone Crabs took the early lead, 1-0, on a Steve Tinoco RBI single off Miracle starter Tom Stuifbergen in the third inning. Fort Myers rallied with a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning including a sacrifice fly from Kyle Knudson.
Charlotte tied the game briefly in the top of the fourth on an unearned run off Stuifbergen (2-3) when Chris Murrill grounded out to second scoring Riccio Torrez with Miracle reliever Nelvin Fuentes on the mound.
Stuifbergen lasted 5 1/3 innings, giving up two runs on nine hits, all singles, and two strikeouts.
Miracle reliever Michael Tonkin allowed two runs on a single by Cody Rogers in the ninth inning.
Back in Charlotte Sports Park night, the Miracle (37-45, 9-6) go for the sweep first pitch set for 6:30 p.m.