JUPITER – The Bradenton Marauders (34-22, 66-59) fell 5-2 against the South Division leading Palm Beach Cardinals (38-18, 70-56) at Roger Dean Stadium on Sunday evening. Palm Beach capitalized on five walks from Marauders starter RHP Luis Heredia (L, 4-6) while turning a 2-1 deficit into a 4-2 lead in the fourth inning.
Carson Kelly chased Heredia with a game-tying ground rule double that even the game at 2-2 in the fourth and left two in scoring position. Robelys Reyes cashed in the go-ahead runs with a one-out, two run double off RHP Henry Hirsch on a soft ground ball that snuck over the first base bag, putting the Cardinals up 4-2.
Luke Weaver (W, 8-5) surrendered seven hits and a walk over six innings for Palm Beach, but escaped two second and third, one out jams without a run scoring. With the Cardinals up 4-2 in the fifth, Weaver struck out CF Austin Meadows and induced a fly out from RF Harold Ramirez.
The Marauders were able to snag an early lead in the first against Weaver. LF Junior Sosa and Meadows hit consecutive singles to put men on the corners. Weaver allowed a sacrifice fly to Ramirez for the game’s first run. Ramirez later broke a 1-1 tie with an RBI ground out in the third to bring Sosa in for the second time.
Palm Beach reliever Keven Herget worked the final three innings for a nine-out save. Blake Drake’s diving catch in right robbed SS Chris Diaz of a hit that would have brought the tying run up in the ninth, sealing the game for the Cardinals instead.
The Cardinals lead the South Division by four games.
The Marauders play game two of the series Monday against Palm Beach at 6:35 p.m. at Roger Dean Stadium. LHP Cody Dickson will be on the mound for the Marauders while Palm Beach has RHP Blake McKnight slated to throw.