Palm Bay Beats Rival Melbourne For First Time Since 2004
It had been thirteen years since the last time the Palm Bay Pirates defeated rival Melbourne, and Friday night did not start off like that was going to change as the Bulldogs took the early lead. But Palm Bay rallied back to take control, then held off one final rally bid to claim a 7-6 victory.
After Melbourne rallied back on a two-run home run from Josh Ford, Stuart Brown got a called third strike on a curveball to record the final out for the Pirates (4-2). Brown earned the save by recording the final eight outs, and he had three strikeouts.
“We kept telling them to believe in themselves and each other,” Palm Bay manager Sean Comfort said. “Don’t try to do too much; just get the job done, one pitch at a time, one out at a time.”
Melbourne took a 4-0 lead over the first two innings. Andres Rodriguez scored on RBI single from Josh Ford in the first inning. Rodriguez then had a two-RBI double on a liner to right field, and scored on an RBI from Ryan Blackstone in the second.
Austin Eisenmann swung all the momentum back to the Pirates in the bottom of the second, when he smacked a two-RBI triple and then scored on an RBI groundout from Brandon Braun. A Derek Hellyer sac-fly that drove in Justin Genao tied things up in the third.
Palm Bay took the lead in the fourth. Somon Bourett had an RBI single and Bj Daniels had a single through the left side that drove in two. Daniels was 3-for-3 with a run.