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August 3, 2009 at 8:00 AM

Huntzinger drives Greenville to victory

In an improvement over Saturday's results, Sox affiliates earned a split of the four games that were played. Starting with International League action, Junichi Tazawa (0-2) was almost as good in his second Triple-A start as he was in his first, but the Pawtucket offense was once again dormant en route to a 3-0 loss to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, completing the series sweep for the Yankees. Tazawa tossed 90 pitches through 5.1 and gave up 4 hits and a walk, striking out 3, leaving the game having not yet allowed a run but with 2 runners in scoring position. Rocky Cherry replaced him and closed out the sixth, but not before allowing both inherited runners to score on a 2-run single up the middle by top Yankees prospect Austin Jackson. Cherry ended up going 1.1 innings giving up 2 hits and a walk in all, allowing a run of his own in the seventh before being replaced by Fernando Cabrera. Cabrera went the final 1.1 innings scoreless, allowing 2 hits and a walk while striking out 1. Aaron Bates and Dusty Brown each went 2 for 4 for the PawSox to pace the offense, which mustered only 6 singles in the game against Yankees starter Josh Towers and relievers Damaso Marte and Jonathan Albaladejo.

Despite out-hitting Harrisburg 8-7, Portland scored only 2 unearned runs and lost by a score of 6-2. Blake Maxwell got the start and lasted 5.0 innings, giving up 3 runs (only 1 earned) on 3 hits and a walk, striking out 3 but taking the loss to fall to 3-7 on the year. Ryne Miller got battered a bit in his 2.1 innings, giving up 2 runs on a walk and 2 hits, including a 2-run home run by Harrisburg DH Marvin Lowrance. Tommy Hottovy closed out the game, pitching the final 0.2 innings but also allowing a run on 2 hits and a walk. Ryan Kalish and John Otness each had a single and a double in the losing effort.

The series finale between Salem former Red Sox affiliate Wilmington was postponed due to rain. No make-up date has been announced.

Greenville scored 4 runs in the fifth and hung on for the win behind the stellar pitching of Brock Huntzinger, defeating Augusta 4-2. Five Drive hitters had multiple-hit games, led by Ryan Lavarnway, who went 2 for 5 with a double and 2 RBI. Ryan Dent also had an impressive game, going 2 for 2 with 2 walks and a run scored, while Shannon Wilkerson once again went 2 for 4 with a run scored in his second game for Greenville since his call-up from Lowell. Pete Hissey also went 2 for 4, and Mitch Dening went 2 for 5 with an RBI. On the bump, Huntzinger (7-8) was nearly flawless in 5.0 shutout innings, allowing only 2 hits while striking out 6 to earn the win. Mitch Herold was a bit less effective, going the next 2.0 allowing 2 runs on 3 hits, although he did strike out 3. Jason Blackey tossed the final 2.0 innings without giving up a run, striking out 3 of his own to earn the save.

The Spinners enjoyed stellar pitching performances from the rehabbing Kason Gabbard and reliever Cesar Cabral and scored 2 runs in each of the first 3 innings to down Vermont 6-1. Gabbard went the first 5.0 scoreless innings yielding 4 hits and 3 walks, striking out 5 to earn the win and even his record at 1-1. Cabral allowed just 1 unearned run in his 4.0 innings of work, allowing 4 hits and walking no one while striking out 3. Derrick Gibson was the hitting star for Lowell, going 4 for 5 with a double and 2 RBI, while the newly-signed Alex Hassan went 2 for 4 in his second professional contest. Chris McGuiness managed only 1 hit in 5 at-bats, but that hit was a 2-run single in the second, and he also chipped in an RBI ground out in the first.

Neither the GCL Red Sox nor the DSL Red Sox were scheduled to play on Sunday.

Player of the Night: Brock Huntzinger, who tossed 5.0 shutout innings allowing only 2 hits while striking out 6 to earn a win for Greenville.