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Martinez leads Tampa to victory in Sunday matinee, 8-3

Omar Martinez trots around the bases after hitting his 12th homer of the season at GMS Field. (Mark LoMoglio)
July 30, 2023

TAMPA, Fla. - The Tampa Tarpons’ (15-15) offense came alive against the Dunedin Blue Jays (12-18) at George M. Steinbrenner Field Sunday afternoon to take the last game of their six-game set. 1B Omar Martinez carried the Tarpons’ offense, driving in five RBIs, with the big blow being his three-run

TAMPA, Fla. - The Tampa Tarpons’ (15-15) offense came alive against the Dunedin Blue Jays (12-18) at George M. Steinbrenner Field Sunday afternoon to take the last game of their six-game set. 1B Omar Martinez carried the Tarpons’ offense, driving in five RBIs, with the big blow being his three-run homer in the seventh inning.

RHP Ryan Harvey (3.2IP, 2H, R, 3BB, 2K) kept Dunedin's bats under wraps while working into the fourth inning during his second start of the season. Harvey depended on his fastball, using it 71% of the time, and limited the exit velocity of his fastball to an average of 82.1 MPH.

RHP Jonathan Loáisiga (1-0) made his first rehab outing (right elbow inflammation) on the road back to Yankee Stadium. Loáisiga tossed two perfect innings while striking out two. He filled up the strike zone, throwing 15 of his 18 pitches for strikes, and ran his sinker up to 97 MPH.

LF Jesus Rodriguez ignited Tampa’s offense, opening the game with an infield single. Martinez took his place on first after bouncing into a fielder’s choice. DH Anthony Hall laced a 101.7 MPH double into the right field corner to bring up CF Daury Arias. Arias hit a hot shot past first base to bring two runs home and give Tampa the early lead.

2B Jose Colmenares lined a 103.2 MPH single to left field to open the second. He moved to second on a wild pitch, advanced to third on a groundout, and came home to score on a wild throw from Tucker Toman at third. Martinez ripped a single into the right field corner to bring home Rodriguez, but Martinez was hosed at second trying to stretch the RBI knock into a double.

In the fourth, Toman blooped a double down the left field line and advanced ninety feet on a groundout. Brennan Orf walked, which put runners at the corners for Edward Duran, who lifted a SAC-fly to center to plate Dunedin’s first run.

The Tarpons added some insurance runs in the seventh. The newest Tarpon, C Manuel Palencia singled, and Rodriguez followed him with a walk. Martinez worked himself into a 3-1 count, sat dead red on a fastball, and he got it. He turned on the heater and put it in the right-field seats to grow Tampa’s lead to six.

Tampa loaded the bases in the eighth and brought in one more run thanks to Martinez, who drove in his fifth RBI of the day. The RBI came on a groundout to first to bring home Colmenares and give the Tarpons an 8-1 lead. The Blue Jays would go on to score two runs in the ninth, but that was all they could manage as Tampa held on to take the game by a score of 8-3.

The Tarpons will hit the road and travel to Bradenton to take on the Marauders Tuesday night. First pitch is set for 6:30 p.m.