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July 1, 2013 at 6:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Diaz stymies Kannapolis, Portland sinks Fisher Cats

7/1 Cup of Coffee: On what was generally a down day for the affiliates, Portland's offense rolled over the Fisher Cats, and Greenville's Luis Diaz (pictured) came away with a gem of an outing. Pawtucket and Lowell both struggled on the mound, while Salem could not complete a sweep of the lowly Carolina Mudcats. 


Pawtucket's pitching had a second straight rough day, as the Pawsox fell to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (NYY), 9-6. Brandon Workman tossed 4 1/3 innings, allowing six runs (five earned) on eight hits and two walks, while punching out four. Pedro Beato received the loss, hurling 1 1/3 innings of relief and allowing two runs on two hits and two walks. 

Will Middlebrooks provided the bulk of the offense for the PawSox, going 2 for 4 with two two-run home runs, three runs scored and four RBI. The other two Pawtucket runs came in the wake of a throwing error in the third inning, temporarily giving the PawSox a 4-3 advantage.

Even after dropping its third contest in a row, Pawtucket still holds a 6 1/2 game lead over Lehigh Valley (PHI) in the International League's North Division. 


A 17-hit attack propelled the Sea Dogs past the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (TOR), 13-5. Anthony Ranaudo improved to 8-2, allowing five runs on nine hits and two walks in his five innings of work. Mike McCarthy pitched brilliantly in relief, earning his second save for four scoreless innings.

Portland's offensive outburst was highlighted by three home runs, a solo shot from Peter Hissey, a three-run home run from Tony Thomas, and a grand slam in the fourth inning from Travis Shaw. Every member of the Sea Dogs lineup had at least one hit except for Derrik Gibson. J.C. Linares and Ryan Dent each had three hits on the afternoon. Shannon Wilkerson was pinch hit for by Linares in the fourth inning, and there is no word on any potential injury. Garin Cecchini continued his torrid transition to Double-A, going 2 for 5 with a walk and three runs scored. The third baseman is now 11 for his last 25 and is currently hitting .364/.475/.455 in eight games with Portland. 


Despite knocking 12 hits, Salem could not complete a sweep of the Carolina Mudcats (CLE), falling 5-3. Henry Owens dropped to 6-3, tossing five innings and allowing three runs on three hits and five walks, while punching out four.

Deven Marrero got the Red Sox off on the right foot, hitting his first home run of the season in the first inning to give Salem a 1-0 advantage. The rest of the Red Sox scoring was the result of a Keury De La Cruz RBI double in the fifth and RBI single in the ninth. The team was just 3 for 10 with runners in scoring position, leaving 10 men on base. 


A fantastic outing from Luis Diaz gave Greenville a 3-0 victory over the Kannapolis Intimidators (CHW). The 21-year-old right-hander had his way with the Kannapolis lineup, tossing seven innings and allowing one hit, while walking one and striking out nine. Jeffrey Wendelken picked up his sixth save for two innings of scoreless relief.

David Chester put the Drive on the board in the second, smashing a solo home run, his 12th of the season. A Jayson Hernandez RBI single in the fourth gave Greenville a 2-0 lead. In the ninth, Drew Turocy scampered home on the second Kannapolis error of the inning to provide an additional insurance run for the Drive. 


Lowell's pitching and fielding struggled on Sunday, as the Spinners were blown out, 13-4, against the Vermont Lake Monsters (OAK). Mario Alcantara received the loss, hurling four innings and surrendering nine runs (seven earned) on nine hits and a walk. First baseman Kevin Mager pitched the ninth inning, allowing two runs on three hits and a walk.

The Spinners committed four errors on the day and were just 3 for 12 with runners in scoring position. Reed Gragnani was 3 for 3 to lead the Lowell offense. Zach Kapstein and Nick Moore each had an RBI double.


Player of the Day: Luis Diaz, who threw seven shutout innings, allowing just one hit and one walk, while striking out nine in Greenville's 3-0 victory over Kannapolis. Diaz, 21, has been impressive since the All-Star break, going 2-1 with a 1.59 ERA in three starts, including 19 strikeouts to just five walks in 17 innings of work. The right-hander is currently 3-4 with a 3.38 ERA in seven games (six starts) this season for the Drive. 

Photo Credit: Luis Diaz, SoxProspects, LLC. 

John Gray is a Staff Writer for SoxProspects.com