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Tortugas homer three times to take series opener, 9-0

By Staff | Jul 10, 2024

FORT MYERS – The Daytona Tortugas homered three times to defeat the Fort Myers Mighty Mussels 9-0 in the series opener Tuesday at Hammond Stadium.

Daytona (40-41, 9-6) right fielder Ariel Almonte opened the scoring with a two-run home run in the first off of Mussels’ (42-38, 11-4) starter Cesar Lares (2-3). The blast had an EV of 105.5 mph and was Almonte’s 16th home run and 30th extra-base hit of the season, both of which lead the FSL. Later in the inning, the Tortugas extended their lead 3-0 on an RBI double from Esmith Pineda.

With the score still 3-0 in the third, Sammy Stafura singled to center to open the frame. Almonte followed with an opposite field single to put two aboard. The next batter was catcher Connor Burns, who connected on a 100.3 MPH opposite field three-run homer to make it 6-0.

In the seventh, Yerlin Confidan pulled a leadoff homer to left at 103.8 MPH off the bat to make it 8-0. The Tortugas tacked on another run in the seventh on a sacrifice fly from Pineda to extend the lead to 9-0.

Daytona starter Nestor Lorant threw four shutout innings in his first start of the season, allowing just one hit and striking out three while walking a season high four batters. Lorant lowered his season ERA to 1.15.

Alex Johnson (3-2) tossed three shutout innings of relief, striking out four and allowing one hit while needing just 31 pitches.

The lone two Mussel hits were singles from Yohander Martinez and Carlos Aguiar, who reached base three times with a pair of walks.

Fort Myers still leads the second half standings in the FSL West by 2.5 games over the Lakeland Flying Tigers.

The Mussels return to action today, July 10 at 12:05 p.m. Ricky Castro (3-1, 4.29) starts for Fort Myers, opposite Reds’ top-30 prospect Adam Serwinowski (1-1, 2.84) of Daytona. Coverage begins at 11:45 a.m. on the Mighty Mussels Baseball Network.