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June 14, 2011 at 8:03 AM

Couch's wonderful outing leads Greenville to win

6/14 Cup of Coffee: Some great pitching highlighted Monday's slate of action for the affiliates.

Pawtucket had 11 hits, but could only carve out 1 run, as they lost to Charlotte (CWS), 4-1. Ryan Lavarnway went 2-4 with 2 doubles in his PawSox debut. Daniel Nava went 2-4. Though he has struggled this season, and was even designated for assignment on May 20, Nava has turned his season around. The outfielder is hitting .448 over his last 8 games. Also going 2-4 for Pawtucket were Nate Spears and Ronald Bermudez. Kyle Weiland started for the PawSox, and struggled for the first time in several starts. Weiland had given up 2 earned runs or less in 6 straight outings entering last night. He went 5.1 innings and allowed 6 hits and 4 runs. The righty walked 4 and struck out 4. Matt Fox, Franklin Morales and Tony Pena combined for 3.2 scoreless innings in relief of the starter, Weiland.

Salem struggled with the bat in the first game of a doubleheader yesterday, losing game 1 to Kinston, 2-0. The team was getting no-hit until the 6th inning when Pete Hissey reached on a bunt single, and that was the only hit they got. Anthony Ranaudo started for Salem and took the loss. He went 5.2 innings and allowed 3 hits and 2 runs (1 earned). Ranaudo walked 3 and struck out 4. The game was tied at 0-0 until the bottom of the 6th inning when Ranaudo struggled with his control and gave up the 2 runs. He gave up 1 hit, walked 2, and threw a wild pitch in the inning.

Salem was on the right side of the pitcher’s duel score in the 2nd game, as they beat Kinston, 2-1. David Mailman went 2-3 and delivered a 2-run homer in the top of the 2nd to put Salem up for good, 2-1. Tom Ebert started, and though he struggled with his control, pitched a solid outing. Ebert went 4 innings and allowed 3 hits and a run. He walked 3 and struck out 1. Jeremiah Bayer relieved Ebert and earned the victory. Bayer went 3 scoreless innings, allowed just 1 hit, walked 1 and struck out 2.

Greenville got great pitching in their 3-0 victory over Charleston (NYY). On the offensive side, Lucas LeBlanc went 3-3 with an RBI, and was the only member of the lineup to collect more than 1 hit. Keith Couch started for the Drive, and twirled a gem. He went 6 scoreless innings, gave up just 3 hits (all singles), did not walk a batter and struck out 6. I’m a sucker for a good k:bb ratio, and Couch’s 51:6 mark this year certainly qualifies. He has walked only 15 batters in his 2-year professional career. Garrett Rau came on in relief of Couch and threw 2 scoreless innings. He allowed 1 hit, walked 1 and struck out 2. Charle Rosario pitched a perfect 9th and struck out the side to earn the save.

The DSL Red Sox continued to rack up the W’s, as they beat the DSL Indians 3-2, in 7 innings. The victory improves the Sox to a DSL-best 11-3 record. Cleuluis Rondon went 1-3 with a home run and 2 RBI. Andres Garcia went 1-2 with 2 walks. Robert Del Rosario went 1-3 with a walk and scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the 7th on a passed ball. Jeffry Fernandez started for the DSL Red Sox and continued to impress. The tall righty went 5 innings and allowed 3 hits and a run. He walked 1 and struck out 4. Through 3 starts, Fernandez has given up but that 1 earned run. Ellis Jimenez came on in relief and blew the save by giving up the tying run in the 6th, but picked up the victory. Jimenez went 2 innings and gave up 3 hits and a run. He did not walk a batter and struck out 3.

Player of the Day: Keith Couch, who spun 6 shutout innings in Greenville's 3-0 victory over Charleston. Couch allowed 3 singles, did not walk a batter and struck out 6.