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April 14, 2010 at 8:52 AM

Pimentel shines in solid night for Sox pitching

4/14 Cup of Coffee: In a rough rehab outing for Pawtucket's Boof Bonser, the Red Sox fell to Lehigh Valley (PHI), 12-0. The Iron Pigs scored early and often against Bonser, who escaped the first having allowed only 1 run but got shelled in the second, allowing 8 runs on 4 hits, 3 walks, and a hit batsman in the frame. The final blow came off the bat of Cody Ransom, who hit a two-run home run with two outs to cap the scoring in the inning. Ramon A. Ramirez replaced Bonser to start the third but did not fare much better, relinquishing three consecutive hits to open the inning and allowing 3 runs in all. Joe Nelson, Chad Paronto, and Robert Manuel shut out the Iron Pigs from there, but it was too little, too late. The Pawtucket offense managed only to scatter 8 singles in the contest, never mustering much in the way of quality scoring chances. Aaron Bates and Bubba Bell each went 2 for 4.

It was a different story in New Britain, Connecticut, as it was the Sea Dogs drubbing the Rock Cats (MIN) by a score of 8-0. Starters David Bromber and Felix Doubront kept the game scoreless through 5.0 innings, but the Portland bats came alive in the sixth against the New Britain bullpen. The first six batters of the inning reached base against reliever Joe Testa, who hit Che-Hsuan Lin to start the inning and finally recorded an out when Chih-Hsien Chiang hit a sacrifice fly to score the fifth Portland run. The Sea Dogs would add to the lead in the top of the eighth when Ray Chang and Chiang hit back-to-back doubles following a walk to Yamaico Navarro, and the Portland bullpen took it home from there. In all, Doubront, Tommy Hottovy, and Ryne Lawson held the Rock Cats to 6 hits and 3 walks, striking out 11. Lin, Nate Spears, and Lars Anderson each registered 2 hits in the game, while Chang and Chiang each went 1 for 3 and drove in 2.

More good pitching led to another tally in the win column for Sox affiliates, as Salem toppled Lynchburg (CIN), 2-1. The star of the game was Stolmy Pimentel, who went the first 5.0 innings allowing only 2 hits and no runs, striking out 5 Hill Cats. Jeremy Kehrt rebounded from a rough outing on opening day at Potomac by tossing 4.0 innings in this one, allowing only a run in the sixth before shutting Lynchburg down the rest of the way to earn the save. Hill Cats starter Lance Janke pitched nearly as well, allowing only 2 runs in his 6.0 innings, but he could not solve Oscar Tejeda, who went 3 for 4 with a double, a run scored, and a stolen base. Tejeda scored the first Red Sox run in the third when he was singled home by Pete Hissey after doubling to lead off the inning. Hissey also had a good night, going 2 for 4 with an RBI.

Greenville rounded out the string of solid pitching performances, scoring just enough early and late to hold off Rome (ATL) and win, 3-1. The first Drive run was delivered by the wheels of Derrik Gibson, who led off the inning with a single, and Wilfred Pichardo, who reached base on a bunt. After Chris McGuiness struck out, the two Greenville baserunners successfully attempted a double steal, with Gibson scoring on an error by Rome third baseman Chris Lovet. Lovet redeemed himself in the top of the third, when he led off the inning with a double and scored one out later on another double off the bat of L. V. Ware, but that was all the scoring the Braves would do against starter Yeiper Castillo, who breezed through 6.0 innings allowing only the 1 run on 3 hits, walking 1 and striking out 8. The Drive made sure he got a win by scoring another unearned run in the bottom of the sixth, when the speedy Pichardo walked with one out and scored all the way from first on a failed pickoff attempt. Greenville scored an insurance run in the seventh when Ken Roque singled in Reymond Fuentes, but it was more than they would need, as Anatanaer Batista and Jeremiah Bayer baffled the Rome offense over the final 3.0 innings to secure the victory.

Player of the Night: Stolmy Pimentel, who blanked Lynchburg for 5.0 innings, allowing only 2 hits and striking out 5 to earn a victory for Salem.