JUPITER, Fla. - Taylor Rogers tossed six shutout innings in his Miracle debut to avoid a sweep and lead the Fort Myers Miracle to a 5-1 win over the Palm Beach Cardinals at Roger Dean Stadium.
Rogers walked the first batter he faced in the first inning. Then, after going to a 2-0 count on Colin Walsh, induced a 5-4-3 double play and settled into the game. Rogers would retire 12 Cardinals on ground ball outs and also record four strikeouts.
Rogers battled Cardinals starter Sam Gaviglio to a scoreless draw through the first three innings. Top prospect Miguel Sano broke the scoring silence with a long home run into the wind that was blowing from left field. Sano worked a full count on Gaviglio before launching his seventh home run of the season and giving the Miracle a 1-0 lead.
Fort Myers added four runs in the fifth. After Kennys Vargas extended his hitting streak to seven games, he was forced out at second base on a ground ball hit by Stephen Wickens. The next hitter, Angel Morales, singled into left and A.J. Pettersen walked to load the bases with one out.
Lance Ray picked up an RBI on a sacrifice fly to center field to plate Wickens and give the Miracle a 2-0 lead. Fort Myers then blitzed Gaviglio with three consecutive run-scoring base hits. Eddie Rosario lashed a single into left, Sano hit a sharp ground ball up the middle and Kyle Knudson served a single into right.
Leading 5-0, the Miracle bullpen allowed a run in the eighth inning when reliever Zack Jones gave up a two-out RBI single to Cody Stanley.
Corey Williams pitched a 1-2-3 frame in the ninth.
The Miracle are off tomorrow, but return to action on Thursday, April 25, at Charlotte Sports Park to start a three-game series with the Stone Crabs. First pitch is set for 6:30 p.m. Fans can listen to each and every play on www.miraclebaseball.com with Adam MacDonald. The Square One Burgers and Bar pregame show begins at 6:15 p.m.