SoxProspects News

August 18, 2011 at 6:13 AM

Portland sweeps doubleheader, Vitek powers Salem over Myrtle Beach


8/18 Cup of Coffee: Portland swept a doubleheader from Reading to highlight Wednesday’s action. Pawtucket, Salem, and Greenville all added victories while Lowell and the GCL Red Sox struggled on the mound in their losses.

Solid pitching and timely hitting allowed Pawtucket to breeze past the Columbus Clippers (CLE), 5-3. Tony Pena pitched 3.1 innings in the start, allowing 2 runs on 7 hits and 2 walks while striking out 4. Junichi Tazawa picked up the victory for his 3.1 innings of relief, allowing a hit and a walk while striking out 5. Randy Williams added 1.1 innings out of the bullpen, striking out 1. Michael Bowden notched his 15th save by tossing a scoreless ninth inning, allowing 1 hit and striking out 2. Down 1-0 after a half inning, the PawSox plated two runs in their half of the first inning on a Hector Luna RBI ground out and a Daniel Nava RBI single. Nava’s RBI double and Luis Exposito’s RBI single in the third gave Pawtucket a 5-1 advantage. Columbus scraped across a run in the fourth, but remained quiet the rest of the contest. Ryan Lavarnway was removed for a pinch hitter in the seventh. The move was not injury related and has promoted speculation he may be headed for Boston.

In game one of a doubleheader, Portland used the later frames to claim a 5-4 victory over the Reading Phillies (PHI). Chris Balcom-Miller picked up the victory for his 5.0 innings of work, allowing 4 runs on 7 hits and 2 walks, striking out 3. Kyle Fernandes added 0.2 innings of scoreless relief, striking out 2. Blake Maxwell recorded his 12th save as he hurled 1.1 innings of scoreless relief, allowing 1 hit and striking out 2. Will Middlebrooks commenced the scoring in the first, lacing a solo home run to give Portland a 1-0 lead. With the game tied in the second, Ryan Dent’s 2 RBI double put the Sea Dogs on top 3-1. Trailing 4-3 in the fifth, Ronald Bermudez cracked an RBI single to knot the score, 4-4. In the sixth, miscommunication in the outfield allowed Ryan Khoury to end up on third with a triple, scoring on Alex Hassan’s RBI single. The run proved to be the game’s winning run as four of the last seven hitters for Reading struck out.

Game two of the doubleheader saw the Sea Dogs jump out to an early lead and hold on for a 5-3 victory over Reading. Jeremy Kehrt received the victory for his 5.0 innings of work, allowing 2 runs on 6 hits and 2 walks, striking out 5. Josh Fields added 2.0 innings of relief, allowing 1 run on 2 hits and a walk, striking out 3. In the second, Oscar Tejeda’s RBI single and Jeff Howell’s 2 run home run (his first in a Portland uniform) gave Portland a 3-0 lead. In the fifth, a run scoring double play and a Middlebrooks RBI single vaulted the Sea Dogs out in front, 5-0. Reading rallied for three in the sixth, but left a runner on second in the seventh to end the game. Howell and Bermudez each had two hits to lead the Portland offense.

A six run third inning allowed Salem to ground the Myrtle Beach Pelicans (TEX), 8-3. Anthony Ranaudo was sharp in his 5.0 innings of work, allowing 2 runs on 5 hits while striking out 5 to pick up the victory. Manuel Rivera tossed the final 4.0 innings to pick up his first save since 2007, allowing 1 run on 2 hits and a walk. Down 1-0 in the third, Salem exploded for six runs on Peter Hissey’s RBI single and back-to-back-to-back home runs from Kolbrin Vitek (three run home run), Bryce Brentz and Miles Head. Vitek’s RBI double in the fourth gave the Red Sox a 7-2 advantage. Derrik Gibson’s sacrifice fly in the seventh accounted for Salem’s eighth and final run. The Pelicans rallied for a run in the ninth, but a key double play killed all momentum as they lost the game and the series to Salem. Vitek was 2 for 5 with a double, home run, run scored and 4 RBI to lead the Red Sox offense.

Like their High-A counterparts, Greenville used a six run inning to drive past the Rome Braves (ATL), 9-6. Keith Couch picked up his sixth victory of the season for his 5.0 innings of work, allowing 3 runs on 8 hits and a walk, striking out 5. Michael Gleason added 2.0 scoreless innings of relief, allowing 2 hits and a walk while striking out 2. Justin Erasmus hurled the final 2.0 innings of the contest, allowing 3 runs (1 earned) on 4 hits and walk, striking out 1. Down 1-0 in the second, Drew Hedman’s RBI single knotted the game, 1-1. A Michael Almanzar sacrifice fly and a Matty Johnson bases loaded walk in the third gave the Drive a 3-2 lead. Greenville put the game away in the fourth, plating six runs on RBI singles by Xander Bogaerts, Almanzar and Johnson as well as a solo home run by Sean Coyle. The Braves chipped away with a run in the fifth and three in the ninth, but could not overcome the sizeable deficit. The two teams combined for 27 hits in the offensive minded contest.

Raul Alcantara had a rude welcoming to Short-Season-A as the Spinners were thrown for a 9-4 loss by the Batavia Muckdogs (STL). Alcantara tossed 2.1 innings in his Lowell debut, allowing 7 runs on 7 hits and 4 walks, striking out 1. Nefi Ogando added 4.2 innings of relief, allowing just 3 hits and 2 walks while striking out 3. Matty Ott added 2.0 innings out of the Spinners bullpen, allowing 2 runs on 2 hits and 2 walks, striking out 1. Down 4-0 in the second, Jayson Hernandez laced a 2 RBI double to cut the Muckdogs lead in half, 4-2. Facing a 9-2 hole in the ninth, the Spinners rallied for two runs on a Hernandez RBI single, but ran out of steam shortly thereafter. Hernandez was 2 for 4 with 4 RBI to lead the Lowell offense.

Sloppy defense and poor pitching allowed the GCL Orioles (BAL) to plaster the GCL Red Sox, 13-5. Aneury Tavarez received the loss for his 3.2 innings of work, allowing 4 runs (2 earned) on 6 hits and 2 walks, striking out 4. Renny Parethmore added 1.1 innings of relief, allowing 4 runs on 2 hits and 3 walks. John Killen was also roughed up in his 1.2 innings out of the bullpen, allowing 5 runs (4 earned) on 3 hits and 4 walks, striking out 1. Jadd Schmeltzer hurled the final 2.0 innings of the contest, allowing a hit and a walk. Down 2-0 in the second, Bryan Johns RBI single and Dreily Guerrero’s RBI ground out allowed the Red Sox to tie the game, 2-2. In a steep 8-2 hole in the fifth, the GCL squad plated three runs on a Cody Koback bases loaded walk and an RBI single from Jordan Weems. The offense remained quiet the rest of the way as the Red Sox three game winning streak was snapped.

Player of the Night: Kolbrin Vitek, who was 2 for 5 with a double, home run, run scored and 4 RBI in Salem’s 8-3 victory over Myrtle Beach.

 
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