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June 23, 2013 at 6:30 AM

Cup of Coffee: De La Rosa dominant for PawSox

6/23 Cup of Coffee: Rubby De La Rosa (pictured) was almost perfect on Saturday, Salem continued to score runs in bunches, and Ty Buttrey had a less-than-stellar 2013 debut. The GCL Red Sox walked off with a win, while the DSL Red Sox were one-hit in a rare loss. 


It was a nail-biter in Toledo, as the PawSox escaped with a 5-4 victory over the Mud Hens (DET) in 10 innings. Rubby De La Rosa pitched the first six innings, allowing only one hit. He walked none and struck out seven while throwing 42 of his 63 pitches for strikes. He has allowed only four earned runs in his last 37 innings, good for a 0.97 ERA in that span.

Clayton Mortensen could not hold the lead, allowing two runs in the seventh to put the PawSox down 2-1. In the top of the ninth, Jackie Bradley, Jr's line drive went off the left fielder's glove, allowing the tying run to score. The PawSox added three more runs in the tenth when Justin Henry hit a two-out bases clearing double. That proved to be the difference, as Anthony Carter surrendered two runs in the bottom of the inning, but struck out the last two batters to earn the save.

Bradley went 2 for 5 with a double, Mitch Maier and Bryce Brentz each went 2 for 4 with a walk, and Jeremy Hazelbaker went 2 for 3 with a triple, a walk, and he swiped his 20th bag of the season. 


The Sea Dogs went 2 for 12 with runners in scoring position, squandering several chances as they fell 8-3 to the Trenton Thunder (NYY). Charlie Haeger fell apart in the fifth, as the first four batters reached base and all came around to score. Haeger would allow six runs, four earned, in four innings, walking four and striking out five. 

Tony Thomas led the offense, connecting on two doubles and scoring a run. Travis Shaw and Shannon Wilkerson also added two hits, while Derrik Gibson added two hits and a walk. Garin Cecchini went 0 for 4 with two strikeouts, but did draw his first walk with Portland. 


Despite a six-run eighth inning, Salem fell to the Wilmington Blue Rocks (KC), 11-7. Kyle Stroup was hit hard, giving up eight runs on eight hits while getting only five outs, as his ERA ballooned to 4.59. Noe Ramirez fared much better, as he allowed only one baserunner in 3 1/3 innings of relief, striking out five. Ramirez has been impressive lately, allowing only four runs in his last 20 1/3 innings, while posting a 15-3 strikeout-to-walk ratio during that time. 

Down 9-1 in the eighth, the Salem offense came alive. Blake Swihart laced a two-run double, and then with the bases loaded, an error by the Wilmington left fielder allowed two more runs to score. Deven Marrero capped the scoring with an RBI single to cut the deficit to two. It would not be enough, as Salem fell to 34-38. Marrero and Swihart each went 2 for 5 with Marrero adding a stolen base. Keury De La Cruz stayed hot, collecting two hits to extend his hitting streak to 18 games. 


The top of the Greenville order was unstoppable, as the Drive crushed the Hagerstown Suns (WAS), 8-0. The Drive scored three in the first, with two runs coming in on a Drew Turocy double. They added to the lead in the second when Mario Martinez belted a grand slam to left field. Mookie Betts and Jose Vinicio each went 3 for 4, and David Chester added two hits.

It was another wild outing for Cody Kukuk, but this time he was able to limit the damage. He did not allow a hit over five innings, but he walked seven while striking out four. Kukuk's control problems are alarming, as he has now walked 50 batters in 51 1/3 innings. Kyle Kraus and Jeffrey Wendelken combined to throw the final four innings to complete the shutout. 


Lowell was doubled up by the Tri-City ValleyCats (HOU), 6-3. Ty Buttrey's 2013 debut did not go as planned, as he was pulled after allowing four runs in 3 1/3 innings. He walked four and did not strike out a batter. The first run he allowed scored on a steal of home, and the ValleyCats added on to the lead with an RBI single later that inning. Buttrey lost his control in the fourth, walking three batters before he was pulled.

Manuel Margot went 1 for 3 with a walk, Kevin Mager went 2 for 4 with a home run, and Kendrick Perkins went 2 for 4 with a steal. Williams Jerez, who the Red Sox took in the second round of the 2011 draft, picked up his first hit after starting the season in an 0 for 17 slump. 


After blowing the lead in the ninth, the GCL Red Sox walked off with a 5-4 win over the GCL Twins (MIN). Randy Perez allowed only one hit while tossing four shutout innings in his first stateside appearance. The Red Sox staked him to an early lead, as they scored twice in the second thanks to three errors by the Twins. With the Red Sox up 3-0 in the seventh, Stephen Williams allowed three runs while retiring only one batter to let the lead slip away. 

Bryan Hudson hit a go-ahead double in the eighth, but the Twins answered with a run off of Ellis Jimenez in the ninth. In the bottom of the 11th, Raymel Flores walked, advanced to second on a balk, moved to third on a passed ball, and scored on a Jose Colorado sacrifice fly to win the game. 


Four DSL Athletics (OAK) pitchers combined on a one-hit shutout, as they defeated the DSL Red Sox, 2-0. Isaias Lucena had the only hit for the Red Sox, a second inning single to right. Yankory Pimentel allowed two runs in five innings as he took his first loss of the season. Ritzi Mendoza threw two scoreless innings of relief to lower his ERA to 1.93. 


Player of the Day: Rubby De La Rosa allowed only one hit in six shutout innings, as he positioned himself for a spot start in a shaky Red Sox rotation. While Allen Webster showed swing-and-miss stuff yesterday, he was still hit hard and inefficient with his pitches. If the Red Sox decide to go a different direction, De La Rosa makes the most sense. He has been stretched out for at least five innings in his last three starts, and it seems the Red Sox are ready to let him loose. 

Photo Credit: Rubby De La Rosa by Kelly O'Connor

Jim Crowell is a Staff Writer for SoxProspects.com