PORT CHARLOTTE - Jonathan Murphy's two-out, two-run single in the top of the eighth inning Wednesday was the game-winning hit in a 6-5 victory for the Fort Myers Miracle over the Charlotte Stone Crabs.
Trailing 4-2 entering the eighth, Stone Crabs reliever Jose Molina retired the first two batters before Max Kepler beat out a ground ball for an infield hit. Adam Brett Walker smoked a double off the center field wall that scored Kepler and cut the Crabs lead to 4-3.
Molina hit Mike Gonzales with a pitch and was replaced by Ryan Garton. Travis Harrison greeted Garton with a single to right to score Walker and tie the game 4-4. With runners at second and third, Murphy delivered the eventual game-winning blow to right-center.
Brian Gilbert entered in the eighth inning and navigated multiple base runners to pick up his second save. Gilbert gave up an RBI triple to Andrew Toles in the eighth, but finished the last two innings with a three hits, two walks and a strikeout.
The Stone Crabs jumped out to a 2-0 lead with a run in each of the first two innings off Miracle starter Tyler Duffey.
The Miracle (8-5) cut the lead in half in the fourth inning. Kepler tripled down the right field line. Kepler then scored on a groundout to second by Walker.
In the fifth, the Miracle briefly tied the game 2-2 as Murphy walked and Jairo Rodriguez doubled down the right field line scoring Murphy from first base.
Duffey also registered a no decision with four runs allowed on nine hits, two walks and two strikeouts.
The Miracle returned to Hammond Stadium Thursday to open a three-game series with the St. Lucie Mets.