May 31, 2012 at 8:45 AM
5/31 Cup of Coffee: Each affiliate pulled of at least one win on a night with double headers for Portland and Salem.
The PawSox hosted the Norfolk Tides (BAL) and came away with a 3-2 win. Norfolk crossed the plate first with a home run by former Red Sox prospect Lew Ford in the first inning. The Tides put up another run in the top of the fourth with another homer off of starter Justin Germano. The PawSox answered with a run of their own in the bottom half of that frame when Mauro Gomez doubled and was driven in when Alex Hassan lifted a sacrifice fly. Pawtucket put up two more runs in the bottom of the sixth to take the lead. Che-Hsuan Lin started things off with a single, advancing to third on a throwing error pick-off attempt. Lars Anderson then drew a walk which was followed by a Gomez ground-rule double that scored Lin. Hassan laced another sacrifice fly to score Anderson for the final run of the inning. Germano came out of the game after the seventh inning, having pitched 7.0 innings, allowing 7 hits, 2 runs, and no walks. He was replaced by Tony Pena Jr. who struck out 2 and walked 1. Pena was taken out and replaced by Clayton Mortensen who got out of the inning by striking out the next batter. Mortensen came back out in the ninth and set batters down in order, striking out two. Mortensen pitched 1.1 innings, allowing no hits, no runs, and no walks. All but three PawSox batters contributed to the team's 9 hits. Gomez's 2 doubles were the only extra base hits for Pawtucket.
After Tuesday night's game was postponed due to rain, the Sea Dogs and the Harrisburg Senators (WAS) split a double header, with Portland coming out on top to win game one 3-2. Harrisburg drew first blood, putting up their only two runs of the game in the bottom of the first. After their initial offensive burst, the Senators were shut down by Sea Dogs pitcher Billy Buckner who pitched 7.0 innings for a complete game with 4 hits, 2 runs, and 1 walk. Portland put up a run in the top of the third when Jeremy Hazelbaker blasted a home run. Portland would not score again until the seventh when Bryce Brentz blasted a solo home run. Later in the inning, Derrik Gibson drew a walk and stole second base before being driven in on a Zach Gentile single. Portland had 7 hits in game one, with Shannon Wilkerson being the only Sea Dogs hitter with a multi-hit contest.
The Senators took game two against the Sea Dogs 5-2 thanks to a five-run fourth inning. Portland starter Stomly Pimentel pitched 6.0 innings for a complete game, but got into hot water in the bottom of the fourth which would cost him the win. Six of the seven hits Pimentel gave up came in the fourth when the Senators scored 5 runs. He was eventually able to get out of the inning and came back out for the next two innings. He pitched 6.0 innings, allowing 7 hits, 5 runs, and 1 walk. Portland put up their first run of the game in the top of the third when Hazelbaker drew a walk, stole second, and was driven in on a line drive from J.C. Linares. The Sea Dogs put up another run in the sixth when Linares smacked a homer, but Portland was unable to battle back any further. Portland batters had 5 hits in the game, 2 of which belonged to Linares.
Salem took both sides of a double header against the Lynchburg Hillcats (ATL), winning game one 6-3. Lynchburg struck first, putting up a run in the bottom of the first. Salem answered in the top of the third with 4 runs of their own. Adalberto Ibarra started off the inning with a walk, followed by a Matt Marquis single. Ibarra was caught stealing third, and Matty Johnson hit a single to advance Marquis. Travis Shaw then drew a walk to load the bases and Michael Almanzar doubled to score Marquis and Johnson. Xander Bogaerts followed with a double to drive in Shaw and Almanzar. The Red Sox put up a run in the fourth inning when Sean Coyle reached base on a double and crossed the plate thanks to a Marquis single. The Red Sox tacked on one more in the fifth when Almanzar singled and was driven in on a single from Christian Vazquez. Salem righty Matt Barnes got the start and threw 4.0 innings, allowing 6 hits, 3 runs, 1 walk, and 8 strikeouts. He was replaced in the fifth by Ruben Flores who pitched three perfect innings with 5 strikeouts to close out game one.
|Drake Britton (Kelly O'Connor)|
Game two featured a great outing by Salem starter Drake Britton in the Red Sox 7-1 win over the Hillcats. Britton pitched 6.0 scoreless innings in one of his best outings yet in the minors. He picked up his third win of the season and allowed just 5 hits, no runs, no walks, and added 7 strikeouts. Of course, the Salem batters backed him up with plenty of run support. The Red Sox started out hot with 5 runs in the first inning. Coyle reached base on a Lynchburg throwing error, followed by a two-run home run by Shaw. Almanzar drew a walk to reach base, and Drew Hedman blasted a triple to drive him in. Hedman scored on a Carson Blair single, and advanced to second on a Marquis single. The last run of the inning came when Felix Sanchez singled to drive in Blair. Salem put up another run in the second when Shaw blasted his second homer of the game to increase the lead to 6-0. The Red Sox picked up their last run of the game in the top of the seventh when Shaw drew a walk, advanced on singles from Almanzar and Hedman, and scored when Blair looped a sacrifice fly. Britton was replaced in the seventh by Keith Couch who allowed 1 unearned run on a throwing error by Coyle, but finished off the 7-1 victory.
|Travis Shaw (Rebecca Barnett)|
The Drive hosted the Savannah Sand Gnats (NYM) and came away with a 6-3 victory. Greenville put up some early runs, scoring 2 in the first inning when Garin Cecchini blasted a two-run homer scoring himself and Keury De La Cruz. Savannah answered with 2 runs of their own in the top of the second against Drive starter Mickey Pena. Pena kept the Sand Gnats scoreless for the next three innings before being replaced by Nefi Ogando in the sixth. Pena pitched 5.0 innings with 7 hits, 2 runs, and 1 walk. Savannah put up a run in the sixth against Ogando, but Greenville batters answered with 2 runs in the bottom of that inning. David Renfroe doubled to reach base and was driven in on a Boss Moanaroa single. Moanaroa in turn was driven in on a single from Drew Turocy. The Drive put up one more run in the bottom of the seventh when De La Cruz singled and was driven in on a Cecchini single. Ogando, who was credited with the win, pitched 2.0 innings with 3 hits, 1 run, and 2 walks. He was replaced in the eighth by Matty Ott who pitched 2.0 perfect innings to end the game. The Drive had 11 hits on the night, with De La Cruz accounting for 3 of them.
Players of the Night: Drake Britton and Travis Shaw who each shined in game two for Salem. Britton threw 6.0 scoreless innings with 7 strikeouts, one of the best appearances of his career. Shaw blasted two home runs to help lead the Red Sox to a 7-1 victory.