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July 22, 2010 at 5:00 AM

Kelly leads Sea Dogs to fifth straight victory in dominant fashion

7/22 Cup of Coffee: Portland continued its recent hot streak by taking down their rivals from the south with a dominant performance from their ace, while Salem split a doubleheader and Lowell once again found the loss column.

Pawtucket hurlers allowed 9 walks and 15 hits on their way to an 11-2 thumping from the Toledo Mud Hens (DET). Left-hander Fabio Castro received the start and went 3.1 innings, allowing 1 run on 1 hit and 5 walks, striking out 5. Randor Bierd followed Castro and was torched for 3 runs on 4 hits in just 0.2 innings. Santo Luis tossed the fifth and the sixth, but was also touched up by Mud Hen hitters, allowing 4 runs on 4 hits and 3 walks. Chad Paronto added an inning of relief, allowing 2 runs on 3 hits and a walk. Finishing off the game for Pawtucket, Rich Hill hurled 2.0 innings, allowing 1 run on 3 hits. The PawSox scored their only runs of the game in the seventh as Ryan Kalish cracked a two-run home run, his third of the season. The loss for Pawtucket is their fifth in a row.

Casey Kelly shined bright for Portland as they held down the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (TOR) 5-1. Kelly was outstanding, going 6.0 innings, allowing just 1 run on 6 hits and a walk while punching out 8. Blake Maxwell followed Kelly and pitched 2.0 scoreless innings, allowing just 1 hit and a walk. Jason Rice continued his stellar season with a 1-2-3 ninth inning that included 2 strikeouts. In the second, Ryan Lavarnway got the Sea Dogs on the board with his RBI single which was followed by a run scoring on a double play by Jorge Padron. Lavarnway added another RBI on his fielder's choice in the fourth, giving Portland a 3-0 advantage. After New Hampshire scored their lone run of the game in the bottom half of the fourth, the Sea Dogs retaliated with a run on Nate Spears RBI ground out in the fifth. Padron gave Portland an insurance run in the ninth on his RBI single, his third as a member of the Sea Dogs. The victory for Portland is their fifth in a row, vaulting them above .500 at 49-48.

Salem needed extras in the first game of their doubleheader, but pulled off a 3-2 win over the Potomac Nationals (WAS). Mike Lee, looking to follow up his stellar start last time out, went 4.0 innings, allowing 2 runs on 8 hits and 2 walks. Cesar Cabral tossed 2.2 innings in relief of Lee, allowing just 3 hits and striking out 4. Patrick Ryan picked up his first win of 2010 for his 1.1 perfect innings of relief. Down 2-0 in the sixth, the Red Sox tied the game on Oscar Tejeda's RBI ground out and a Will Middlebrooks RBI single. The game, originally scheduled for seven innings, went into extra frames and saw Pete Hissey's sacrifice fly in the eighth seal the victory. Drew Hedman was 2 for 3 with an RBI to lead the Salem offense.

Attempting the doubleheader sweep, Salem could not come back from an early hole as they lost to Potomac 4-1. Caleb Clay picked up the loss for his 5.0 innings of work in which he allowed 4 runs (3 earned) on 6 hits and 4 walks while striking out 4. Lance McClain pitched a scoreless inning of relief, allowing just one hit. The Red Sox were held without a hit until the fourth, where they scored their lone run of the contest on a Tejeda RBI single. Tejeda was 2 for 3 with an RBI to pace the Salem offense.

Greenville jumped out to an early lead and got solid pitching as they downed the Kannapolis Intimidators (CHW) 4-1. Pete Ruiz picked up his sixth victory of the season for his 6.0 scoreless innings in which he allowed just 2 hits and 2 walks. Armando Zerpa, fresh off his SoxProspects.com Pitcher of the Week award, hurled 2.0 innings, allowing an unearned run on 4 hits while striking out 4. Anatanaer Batista picked up his fifth save for tossing a scoreless ninth inning. The Drive jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first as Zach Gentile laced an RBI single and scored on a double play ball before Michael Almanzar smacked an RBI double. Two key Kannapolis errors in the second put runners on 2nd and 3rd with just one out and allowed Chris McGuiness to bring home a run on his RBI single. With the victory, Greenville is now 17-9 in the second half, good enough for first place in the Southern division.

Lowell continued its dance with futility as they blew another late lead, losing 5-4 to the Brooklyn Cyclones (NYM). Tyler Wilson received the start for the Spinners, going 4.0 innings, allowing 3 runs on 4 hits and 2 walks while striking out 6. Tyler Lavigne followed Wilson, tossing 2.0 innings, allowing 1 run on 3 hits. Jay Broughton tossed a scoreless inning of relief, but allowed 3 walks before escaping trouble. Wilson Matos picked up his fourth loss of the season as he allowed the decisive run to score in his lone inning of work. Lowell got off to a quick start, using a Bryce Brentz RBI ground out to take an early 1-0 lead in the first. Down 3-1 in the fourth, the Spinners scored three on two key throwing errors by the Brooklyn pitcher and a Jayson Hernandez RBI single. The loss for Lowell marks their ninth straight defeat.

Down in Florida, the GCL Red Sox were overwhelmed by the GCL Orioles (BAL) 9-5. Eric Curtis turned in a decent start, throwing 5.0 innings, allowing 2 runs on 5 hits and striking out 2. T.J. Large, in the first game of a rehab stint, tossed 2.0 innings, allowing 1 run on 2 hits while striking out 3. Justin Erasmus picked up his first loss of the season for his 0.2 innings of work, allowing 6 runs (2 earned) on 3 hits and 3 walks. Matt Phillips secured the last out of the eighth inning after allowing a hit. The Red Sox drew first blood in the third, as Wilfred Pichardo's RBI single gave them a 1-0 lead. Down 2-1 in the sixth, the Red Sox picked up four on a Willie Holmes RBI double, an error by the second baseman, a Jason Thompson sacrifice fly and an Oscar Perez RBI single. Perez was 2 for 4 to lead the Red Sox offense.

In a shortened contest, the DSL Red Sox downed the DSL Astros (HOU) 4-2. Francellis Montas received the start for the Red Sox, going 4.2 innings while allowing 2 runs on 3 hits and 5 walks. William Cuevas picked up the victory for his 0.2 innings of work in which he allowed a walk. The Red Sox lone hit of the contest came in the fourth, an RBI double by Jesus Loya. The Red Sox added two more runs in the fifth on bases loaded walks to Loya and Jair Bogaerts. A key fielding error by the Astros shortstop allowed the Red Sox to add a fourth run in the sixth and final frame. The victory puts the DSL squad back over .500 at 23-22.

Player of the Night: Casey Kelly, for his dominating performance against New Hampshire in which he tossed 6.0 innings, allowing just 1 run on 6 hits and a walk while striking out 8.