PORTLAND, Maine — The Portland Sea Dogs fell for the third straight game to the Trenton Thunder 5-2 Saturday night at Hadlock Field.
The Sea Dogs (71-44) headed to the late innings with a 2-1 lead, but the Thunder responded for four runs in the seventh and took a lead they would not relinquish.
Mike Augliera took to the mound for his seventh inning of work, but seemingly ran out of gas. Mason Williams began the frame with a single and scored on Dan Fiorito’s triple to the right-centerfield gap, which tied the game.
Ali Castillo gave the visitors the 3-2 lead with a run-scoring single and moved to third on a trickler to the outfield off the bat of Jake Cave. Robby Scott came out of the pen to relieve the starter and delivered a wild pitch on his first throw of the night and gave Trenton the 4-2 lead.
Ben Gamel topped off the inning with an RBI double, Cave scored and the Thunder (56-59) led 5-2.
Portland had no answer for the Trenton bullpen over the final three innings as Phil Wetherell completed the game with three scoreless innings on the hill.
Trenton jumped on the board first for the third time in the series with a run in the second against Mike Augliera. Tyler Austin began the frame with a double to left-center and scored when Fiorito knocked him home with a single two batters later.
The Sea Dogs’ offense struck back and tied the game with a hard-earned run in the third. Heiker Meneses reached on an error, Shannon Wilkerson singled, and Mike Brenly reached on the pitcher Joel De La Cruz’s error, loading the bases. Sean Coyle hit a slow tapped over the head of the pitcher, to second base, which scored Meneses and tied the game at 1-1.
The ‘Dogs scored again and took their first lead of the series with a run in the fifth inning. Francisco Rondon took over for De La Cruz and began his outing by loading the bases with a single, a hit batter, and a walk. Michael Almanzar stepped in and was hit by the first pitch from the southpaw, bringing home the runner from third and putting Portland in front 2-1.
Augliera (5-10) worked into the seventh, but was left on the hook. He gave up five runs on 10 hits; he did not walk a batter and struck out three. Scott worked two-thirds of an inning and allowed both inherited runners to score on one hit and two strikeouts. Aaron Kurcz finished up the game with two scoreless on the mound.
Trenton’s De La Cruz went the first four and allowed one unearned run on four hits; he walked one and struck out a season-high seven. Rondon (1-2) earned the win with two innings of work and Wetherell his first save of the season with his three innings.