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July 17, 2011 at 7:41 AM

Lavarnway goes deep in perfect night at the plate, but PawSox fall

7/17 Cup of Coffee: Red Sox affiliates went 2-6 in an all-around tough day, with comebacks and late runs victimizing multiple teams.

A wild one in Pawtucket led to a combined 13 runs in the fourth inning alone, but the PawSox fell to the Durham Bulls (TB), 11-8. A second-inning home run from Brent Dlugach gave Pawtucket a 1-0 lead, and from there the flood gates opened. Tony Pena, Jr. was knocked out in the fourth after allowing 7 runs (6 earned) on 6 hits in 3.1 innings pitched. But after Durham's big inning, Pawtucket responded with one of its own in the bottom half of the inning. After Ronald Bermudez and Che-Hsuan Lin both knocked in runs, Lars Anderson delivered a grand slam to tie the game 7-7. A run in the sixth gave Durham the lead and they tacked on three more in the ninth to pad the cushion. Ryan Lavarnway hit his second home run in as many nights in the ninth, but the PawSox could not complete the comeback.

A late run by the New Britain Rock Cats (MIN) helped them squeak past Portland, 5-4. The Rock Cats led early as well, scoring three runs off of Chris Balcom-Miller in the second. Balcom-Miller finished his outing with 6.0 innings pitched, allowing 4 runs on 8 hits with 3 walks and 5 strikeouts. The Sea Dogs clawed back in the fifth with a pair of runs coming on a Mitch Dening single to cut the New Britain lead to 3-2. The Rock Cats made it 4-2 in the sixth, but in the bottom of the seventh Portland pushed across two more runs thanks to RBI hits from both Dening and Will Middlebrooks. In the ninth, however, Kyle Fernandes fell to 0-4 on the season after allowing the eventual winning run.

A marathon contest for Salem resulted in a combined 28 hits and eight errors, but it was the Myrtle Beach Pelicans (TEX) who came out on top, 8-6 in 13 innings. Trailing 1-0 in the top of the second, Vladimir Frias singled in a pair to give the Red Sox the lead. Myrtle Beach scored another run off of Chris Hernandez to tie it in the second, whose outing lasted 5.0 innings with 3 runs (1 earned) allowed on 9 hits and 4 strikeouts. With the score tied at 2 in the fifth, Salem scored three runs to take the lead. After Frias scored on a throwing error by the Pelicans catcher, Kolbrin Vitek and Bryce Brentz both picked up RBI singles. Hernandez gave one back in the bottom of the inning, but Salem still led 5-3. They padded the lead to 6-3 on an RBI groundout from Frias in the sixth. But the Pelicans scored the next five runs, including one to tie in the ninth and two to win it in the 13th. Though William Latimer allowed the game-tying run, he did pitch well in relief, striking out 7 in 4.0 innings of work.

More late runs were the demise of affiliates as two runs in the eighth befell Greenville, who lost to the Rome Braves (ATL), 3-2. The Drive took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first after an RBI single from Drew Hedman. Rome tied it, however, in the fourth on its only run scored against Miguel Celestino. Celestino had his longest outing of the season, a 7.0 inning effort in which he allowed 1 run on 4 hits with 6 strikeouts. Greenville took the lead right back in the bottom of the fourth thanks to a solo home run by Brandon Jacobs. The Drive took that 2-1 lead into the eighth, but a pair of runs allowed in the inning by Juan Rodriguez made the difference.

Lowell scored four runs in the second, but that was the extent of its offensive output and lost to the Brooklyn Cyclones (NYM), 5-4. After Tim Roberson singled in a run, Keury De La Cruz knocked in three with a double, and it seemed the Spinners were off and running. But Raynel Velette allowed two runs in both the second and fourth to tie the game at 4. Velette finished his outing with 3.2 innings pitched and allowed 4 runs on 4 hits with 3 walks and 4 strikeouts. Brooklyn tacked on another in the sixth off of Nefi Ogando for what would eventually become the game-winning run.

On Tuesday, the GCL Red Sox and GCL Twins (MIN) had a game suspended by rain. That game was completed yesterday, with the Red Sox holding on for a 5-3 victory. The game resumed in the fourth inning with the Red Sox leading 4-1, but the Twins opened yesterday's scoring with two runs in the sixth off of William Cuevas. But the Red Sox added two runs of their own in the bottom half of the inning on a two-run home run by David Chester to extend the lead to 6-3 and come away with the victory.

The Twins and Red Sox also played their regularly-scheduled game yesterday, with the Twins winning the seven-inning game, 1-0. Raul Alcantara was a hard-luck loser, falling to 0-1 after allowing 1 run on 3 hits in 4.0 innings pitched. He also walked 2 and struck out 3. The Red Sox offense managed just 2 hits against Twins pitching. Those hits came back-to-back to lead off the sixth inning, but the Red Sox couldn't push a run across.

The only affiliate to win a game which was played in full on Saturday was the DSL Red Sox, who dodged a five-run inning from the DSL Rays (TB) to come back and win, 10-9. The Red Sox led 5-0 through two and a half innings, but starter Edwin Osorio gave up three in the bottom of the third. He pitched just 2.1 innings, allowing 3 runs (2 earned) on 3 hits with 4 walks and 3 strikeouts. After allowing another run in the fifth, the Red Sox padded their lead to 7-4 thanks to a two-RBI single in the seventh by Aneudis Peralta. But the Rays combined for five runs off of Carlos Pinales and Leonel Vazquez in the bottom of the inning, and the Rays led 9-7. In the eighth, however, RBI hits came from Anthony Amaya, Deiner Lopez, and David Sopilka to give the Red Sox the lead and the win.

Player of the Night: Ryan Lavarnway, who hit his second home run in two days while going 4 for 4 in Pawtucket's 11-8 loss to Durham. Lavarnway now has nine home runs for Pawtucket on the season and 23 longballs overall.