The Portland Sea Dogs amassed 15 hits Thursday.

They couldn’t come up with one in the clutch.

Portland left 12 runners on base, three of them after loading the bases with no outs in the ninth inning. The missed opportunities contributed to a 4-3 loss to the Hartford Yard Goats before a Hadlock Field crowd of 5,510, comprised mostly of children on school field trips.

The Sea Dogs (18-17) received another fine start from Jalen Beeks (1.60 ERA), but the bullpen couldn’t hold a one-run lead.

Beeks allowed two runs (both homers) over 62/3 innings. He walked one and struck out seven.

Jalen Beeks delivers a pitch against the Yard Goats. Staff photo by Shawn Patrick Ouellette

“The curveball was better than usual,” Beeks said. “The cutter wasn’t really there. Three-pitch mix today (along with a fastball and change-up). I just had to battle and let my defense work behind me.”

Both Danny Mars and Joseph Monge had three hits, and Rafael Devers went 2 for 4.

“A lot of the guys had good at-bats,” Mars said. “It’s a team thing. When everyone gets rolling, it makes it a lot easier to hit.”

Devers started a two-out rally in the first with a single. After Nick Longhi reached on an error, Mike Olt singled them both in.

But Hartford (16-22) tied it in the second on solo home runs by Dillon Thomas and Dom Nunez. That ended Beeks’ consecutive scoreless-innings streak at 25 – the second-longest in club history after 272/3 innings in 2014 by Henry Owens.

But after the second, Beeks gave up only three more hits, all singles.

Max White of the Yard Goats steals second base as Heiker Meneses of the Sea Dogs tries to apply the tag. Staff photo by Shawn Patrick Ouellette

“He was in command from the first pitch to the last one,” said Sea Dogs Manager Carlos Febles. “Second inning hurt a little, but after that he settled in nicely. Kept the ball down and attacked the hitters.”

In the seventh, consecutive singles by Mars, Josh Tobias and Devers loaded the bases with one out. Shane Broyles (2-0) relieved and Longhi hit a hard grounder to Josh Fuentes at third. Fuentes bobbled the ball, ending any chance at a double play, and Mars scored on the fielder’s choice for a 3-2 lead.

In the eighth, Portland’s Ty Buttrey (1-2) walked Max White. With two outs, Buttrey surrendered Ryan McMahon’s game-tying double off the left-field wall, and Drew Weeks’ game-winning single to left.

Josh Tobias attempts to turn a double play for the Sea Dogs as Hartford’s Dom Nunez tries to break up the play. Staff photo by Shawn Patrick Ouellette

In the bottom of the ninth, Mars singled off Hartford closer James Farris and Tobias doubled. Devers was intentionally walked.

Farris struck out Longhi looking and Olt swinging. Monge hit into a fielder’s choice to end the game.

“We couldn’t get the big hit,” Febles said.

NOTES: Devers improved his batting average to .336. … Mars, who left Tuesday’s game after a collision with Monge, now has back-to-back three-hit games. He’s batting .324. … Hartford tried a suicide squeeze in the second but the bunt was popped up. Beeks caught it and threw to third for the double play. … The Sea Dogs begin a seven-day road trip Friday, with three games in Trenton, New Jersey, and then four in Manchester, New Hampshire. They return to Hadlock next Friday, May 26. There will be fireworks after the game.

Kevin Thomas can be reached at 791-6411 or:

[email protected]

Twitter: @ClearTheBases