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June 29, 2013 at 10:12 AM

Cup of Coffee: Haegar dominates in Sea Dogs win

6/29 Cup of Coffee: Portland and Lowell won on the back of strong pitching performances, while Salem squeaked out an extra-inning victory. The DSL Red Sox split a doubleheader, while the GCL Red Sox and PawSox both fell in close games. The Drive saw their game suspended after one inning.


The Pawtucket Red Sox took a loss Friday, falling to the Toledo Mud Hens (DET), 10-6. The PawSox pitching staff yielded four home runs, three of which came off starter Alfredo Aceves. Aceves was tagged for seven hits and five runs in five innings of work. Following Aceves was right-hander Terry Doyle, who gave up four earned in 1 1/3 innings pitched. 

While the PawSox offense collected 12 hits, they did not score until the bottom of the sixth inning. By that time, Toledo had already jumped out to a 5-0 lead. All nine PawSox hitters collected at least one hit, with Jackie Bradley Jr., Bryce Brentz and Justin Henry notching multi-hit games. Most of the offensive output came in the seventh inning, where Henry poked an RBI single and Bradley had a  two-RBI base knock.


Portland beat the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (TOR) 5-1 on the strength of Sea Dogs starter Charlie Haegar's knuckleball. Haeger, 29, threw eight scoreless innings in the contest, scattering seven hits and striking out six. Perhaps what is most impressive about Haegar's performance was his control, as he didn't walk a single batter.

Catcher Christian Vazquez went 4 for 5 in the game, including two doubles and two RBI. Vazquez opened the scoring for the Sea Dogs by singling home Michael Almanzar in the fourth inning. He would later come around to score. In the eighth inning, Vazquez doubled home Almanzar, who went 3 for 4 and would later be knocked home on a base hit from Heiker Meneses.


It took one extra frame for the Salem Red Sox to defeat the Carolina Mudcats (CLE) 4-3, as Salem won in walk-off fashion thanks to a RBI single from Nick Natoli. Entering the bottom of the 10th inning, Salem catcher Blake Swihart led off with a walk, followed by a sacrifice bunt and a single, which advanced him to third base with one out. Natoli, the nine hitter, singled on a ground ball through the right side to give Salem the win. 

Salem starter William Cuevas continued his string of strong performances in Friday's contest, hurling seven strong innings. Over his last four starts dating back to June 11, Cuevas has given up only five earned runs in 26 innings pitched. Cuevas surrendered two runs and struck out eight, but was unable to get the win, as the game went into extra innings after Carolina scored in the top of the ninth. 


The Greenville Drive's contest against the Kannapolis Intimidators (CHW) was suspended and will be made up on Saturday. The game was held up after one inning of play, during which the Intimidators were able to jump out to a 4-0 lead. 


The Lowell Spinners pulled to a record of 5-5 on the early season after Friday's 4-1 victory over the Vermont Lake Monsters (OAK). Lowell starter Ty Buttrey threw six scoreless innings, giving up only two hits and one walk, while striking out two. The Spinners were led offensively by three and four hitters Kevin Mager and Kendrick Perkins, who drove in two runs each. Perkins collected his on a two-run shot in the sixth inning, which scored Mager.


The GCL Red Sox dropped their contest against the GCL Twins, 5-2. The Twins jumped out to an early 4-0 lead scoring two runs in both the third and fifth innings. The Red Sox were able to answer back in the top of the sixth with RBI hits from Mark Hamilton and Deiner Lopez, but that would cap the scoring for the Red Sox in the game.

Four of the five runs were charged to Luis Ortega, who relieved starter Dioscar Romero after two innings. Ortega gave up seven hits and four runs in three innings pitched.


The DSL Red Sox split their doubleheader against the DSL Indians, with each game going only seven innings. In the Red Sox' 4-3 win over the Indians, starter Carlos Garcia scattered eight hits and three runs over five innings pitched. Garcia, who was scheduled to pitch earlier in the week, has a season ERA of 2.59. Third baseman Victor Acosta blasted a two-run home run in the fifth inning, tying the game at three. A sixth-inning double from Luis Alejandro Basabe gave the Red Sox the lead and, ultimately, the win. 

In their 2-1 loss in game two, the Red Sox were unable to muster an offensive attack, compiling only four hits. Starter Yankory Pimentel pitched four strong innings, giving up two runs (one earned) on six hits.


Player of the Day: On a day where strong pitching was in abundance, Sea Dogs starter Charlie Haeger stood above the rest. The knuckleballer displayed perfect control of the pitch Friday, surrendering zero walks and striking out six in the game. After his 11th start in Portland, the right-hander lowered his season ERA to 3.78. 

Photo Credit: Charlie Haegar by Kelly O'Connor.

Luke Lavoie is a Staff Writer for SoxProspects.com. Follow him on Twitter @LukeHoCoTimes.