SoxProspects News

August 22, 2012 at 8:28 AM

Cup of Coffee: Matzusaka returns to form as Meyers leads GCL


8/22 Cup of Coffee: Two teams fighting for their playoff lives picked up victories on Tuesday while Portland took home an extra-inning thriller and the remainder of the affiliates stumbled.  
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The rehabbing Daisuke Matzusaka had perhaps his best start of the season as Pawtucket held the Rochester Red Wings (MIN) to one hit in a 3-0 victory. Matzusaka hurled 7.0 shutout innings, allowing just one hit and four walks while punching out seven. Josh Fields added 2.0 scoreless innings of relief, striking out four to pick up his first save with the PawSox. Nate Spears' solo home run in the first inning proved to be all the offense necessary for Pawtucket. However, Ronald Bermudez added an RBI triple in the fifth to give Matzusaka a bit more breathing room. The PawSox now sit a game and a half up in the wild card race over Lehigh Valley (PHI).
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In a 15-inning extra classic, the Sea Dogs tamed the New Britain Rock Cats (MIN) 4-2. Jeremy Kehrt received the start for Portland, tossing 5.0 innings, allowing two runs on five hits and three walks. Four Sea Dog relievers combined for 10.0 shutout innings in relief of Kehrt, allowing just four hits and three walks. Down 2-0 in the sixth, Bryce Brentz roped an RBI single that tied the game, 2-2. The teams remained knotted until the 15th when Marquez Smith blasted a game-winning two-run home run. Smith had a nice day at the plate, going 3 for 6 with two doubles, a home run and two RBI. 
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In a game with just nine hits between the two teams, Salem dropped a close 3-2 decision to the Myrtle Beach Pelicans (TEX).Yeiper Castillo picked up the loss as he tossed 4.2 innings, allowing three runs (two earned) on four hits and three walks while striking out three. Down 3-0 in the seventh, a pair of costly Myrtle Beach errors allowed the Red Sox to pull to within a run. Unfortunately, the mini-rally was extinguished and Salem never threatened again. The Red Sox are now 20-37 in the second half of the season.  
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Greenville lost its fifth straight game after their bullpen blew a late lead as the Augusta GreenJackets (SF) rallied for a 6-5 victory in the first game of a doubleheader. Kyle Kraus received the start and went 4.0 innings, allowing a run on four hits while striking out 1. Down 3-1 in the sixth, the Drive rallied to take a 5-3 advantage on an RBI single by Blake Swihart, an RBI double by Nick Natoli and an RBI ground out off the bat of Henry Ramos. The scoring was aided by two stolen bases from Garin Cecchini who now has 43 steals on the season. Coming in to close out the contest, Dylan Chavez struck out the first two batters he faced before getting into trouble. He allowed a double and a hit batsman before allowing a three run home run that propelled Augusta back into the lead. Greenville would leave Cecchini on third in the ninth as they fell short.
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Game two between Greenville and Augusta was rained out and will be made up as part of a doubleheader tomorrow. 
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The Spinners could not withstand a 13-hit attack as they were doubled up by the Aberdeen Ironbirds (BAL), 6-3. Pat Light struggled in his 2.1 innings of work, allowing three runs on six hits and a walk. Raynel Velette did not fare much better, allowing thee runs (two earned) on six hits and two walks in 3.2 innings of relief. The big hit of the evening for Lowell came off the bat of Aneury Tavarez, who laced a two-run home run in the sixth inning to put the Spinners on the board. Tavarez has quietly put together a stellar month of August, hitting .359/.423/.563 with a home run, four triples and nine RBI in 17 games. 
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A big offensive day for the GCL Red Sox allowed them to beat back the GCL Orioles (BAL), 9-4. Austin Maddox tossed 2.0 scoreless innings, walking a batter and striking out one in the start. Matt Spalding picked up his first professional victory for hurling 2.2 innings of relief, allowing an unearned run on two hits and two walks, striking out three. The Red Sox compiled 13 hits, with second baseman Mike Meyers (pictured) leading the charge with a 3 for 3 performance, scoring two runs, walking twice, and driving in four. Nathan Minnich also had a nice day at the plate, going 2 for 4 with two runs scored, a triple, and a walk. The Red Sox are now two games up on the GCL Twins with four games left to play for the South division lead. 
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Trying to sneak into the playoffs, the DSL Red Sox did themselves no favors in a 3-1 loss to the DSL Pirates (PIT). Randy Perez received the loss for his 4.0 innings of work, allowing three runs (two earned) on three hits and two walks. Victor Ramirez pitched admirably in relief, hurling 5.0 shutout innings, allowing a hit and three walks. The Red Sox lone run of the contest came in the eighth on an Alixon Suarez RBI single. The DSL Sox now find themselves three games back in the division and two games out of a wild card spot with four games remaining. 
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Player of the Day: After a slow start to his rookie season, 2012 12th round selection Mike Meyers has had a scorching month of August, hitting .395/.447/.605 with a home run, six doubles and ten RBI in 15 games. 

Photo credit: Mike Meyers by William Parameter

 
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