The Clearwater Threshers held off a late charge from the Fort Myers Miracle 5-4 in the series finale at Hammond Stadium Sunday afternoon.
Threshers starter Severino Gonzalez pitched the first six innings without giving up a run before J.D. Williams smacked a two-run double in the seventh. Gonzalez (2-3) retired 10 in a row from the third through the sixth inning and both runs scored in the seventh were unearned.
The Threshers took a 2-0 lead in the top of the third inning against Miracle starter Taylor Rogers. With two outs and two on, Aaron Altherr pulled a ground ball down the third base line on a 1-0 pitch from Rogers to score a pair of runs. Altherr added a third RBI on a fielder's choice in the fifth to push the lead to 3-0.
Clearwater combined three hits including back-to-back RBI doubles from Jonathan Roof and Harold Martinez to extend the Threshers advantage to 5-0.
Williams awoke a sleeping Miracle offense that had only mustered two hits off Gonzalez through the first six innings. After Aderling Mejia reached on an error and D.J. Hicks singled up the middle, Gonzalez retired Kennys Vargas and Matt Koch. Williams, on a 1-2 count, smoked a double into deep center field to score two and get Fort Myers on the board.
Byron Buxton hit a solo homer off Threshers reliever Ken Giles in the eighth. The homer was Buxton's fourth of the season and third in the last six games. Giles had a bases loaded walk in the ninth to Stephen Wickens that scored another Miracle run, but retired Levi Michael to end the game. Giles recorded his third save.
Rogers (8-5) lasted six innings and gave up five runs, four earned, on nine hits with three strikeouts.
The Miracle (64-38, 19-16) continue an eight-game homestand and begin a four-game series with the Daytona Cubs at 7:05 p.m. Monday at Hammond Stadium.