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Fort Myers Mighty Mussels break strikeout record in 5-2 win over Tampa

By AP | Sep 16, 2021

FORT MYERS – The Mighty Mussels broke the franchise record for strikeouts in a season Wednesday, taking the opener of the series with the Tampa Tarpons 5-2 at Hammond Stadium.

Fort Myers (58-53) struck out 10 batters in the win, surpassing the single-season record of 1,188 punchouts set by the 2019 Miracle. Since the Fort Myers franchise began in 1992, only nine of the 29 teams have reached 1,000 strikeouts in what was typically a 140-game season. The 2021 Mussels will likely eclipse 1,200 strikeouts in just 116 games.

Charles Mack drove in three runs in the win, delivering a two-out, two-run triple in the first inning to put the Mussels on top.

Right-hander John Stankiewicz (1-0) turned in a quality start to notch his first career win. The New Jersey native set a career high in innings (6.0), allowing five hits and one walk while striking out six.

After Mack’s double put the Mussels on top 2-1, Fort Myers strung together four walks and two hit-by-pitches to extend the lead to 5-1 in the third inning.

The Tarpons (72-41) got a solo home run from Anthony Garcia in the ninth before loading the bases with two outs. The Mussels then called upon Matthew Swain, who got Jasson Dominguez to pop out and end the game.

Because Wednesday’s doubleheader was delayed 2.5 hours due to wet grounds, the second game was pushed to Thursday. Thursday’s doubleheader will begin at 4:30 p.m. and feature two seven-inning games. Gates open at 4 p.m. Coverage of the twin bill starts at 4:15 p.m. on the Mighty Mussels Baseball Network.

Box Score: https://atmilb.com/3tImlpa