Facing a no-hitter for the first time in their 17-year history, the Bridgeport Bluefish finally broke through in the top of the ninth inning, but ultimately dropped the game to the Sugar Land Skeeters, 6-3, before 5,521 fans at Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Tex., land is a suburb of Houston on Thursday night. The game was streamed live on ESPN3.
The Skeeters wasted little time getting on the board when DH Delwyn Young and right fielder Brian Barton both delivered RBI singles against Bridgeport starter Tomo Ohka.
Sugar Land upped its lead to 3-0 in the bottom of the second inning on Young’s second RBI of the game—this one a sacrifice fly to centerfield. The score remained 3-0 until the Skeeters exploded for three runs in the bottom of the seventh. Catcher Travis Scott drove home Adam Goldman with a sacrifice fly to center. Jaye Chapman came in to relieve Ohka, and Nick Stavinoha immediately delivered a two-out two-run double.
Clint Everts, the Skeeters' starter, did not allow a hit thru eight innings. In fact, no Bluefish reached base until the sixth inning when leadoff hitter Luis Rodriquez was hit by a pitch, and Juan Martinez reached on an error. Everts and the Skeeters settled down, however, retiring the next three Bridgeport batters in order.
The 'Fish finally broke through in the top of the ninth. After center fielder James Simmons went down swinging to lead off the inning, right fielder Prentice Redman reached first on an error by Sugar Land third baseman Chase Lambin. After Redman reached on an error, Bluefish second baseman Ramon Castro delivered, banging a double to left field, breaking up Everts' no-no and Redman advancing to third. Bridgeport left fielder Fred Lewis followed with a two-run triple that cut the Sugar Land advantage to 6-2. Skeeters' manager Gary Gaetti then took out Everts to a standing ovation of the appreciative hometown crowd, replacing the 2002 first-round pick of the Montreal Expos with Gary Majewski who gave up a two-own RBI single to first baseman Luis Lopez before ultimately closing the door.
Everts' picked up the win for Sugar Land, going 8.1 innings, allowing three runs (one earned) on four hits. He struck out four and walked just one batter. Okha, a 38-year-old right hander from Kyoto, Japan, who converted himself into a knuckleballer this year in an effort to resurrect his career, was tagged with his eighth loss versus five wins. Okha allowed six runs—all earned—while allowing 10 hits, walking three and striking out two batters in 6.1 innings.
The 'Fish will return home to begin a three-game series vs. the Lancaster Barnstormers on Wednesday, Aug. 6. First pitch at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard is slated for 7:05 p.m. Tickets are available at the Bluefish box-office from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, or by clicking HERE. For more information, call. 203-345-4800.