April 6, 2014 at 8:00 AM
The PawSox put together a 10-hit barrage behind Rubby De La Rosa to down the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (PHI), 6-4. De La Rosa shut down the IronPigs over five innings of work, striking out five and allowing only two hits, both to former major league players. The bullpen was not so fortunate. After pitching a scoreless sixth, Chris Resop walked two straight batters before giving up a two-run double, and Drake Britton was unable to prevent further damage, letting in another two runs in the inning.
Meanwhile, the offense teed off on Lehigh Valley, knocking in four runs on five hits through the first four innings. Brandon Snyder went 2 for 3 and opened scoring in the second, hitting a two-run home run. Garin Cecchini also put together an impressive night, going 3 for 3 with a walk and an RBI.
The Portland Sea Dogs gave up a late run as they fell to the Reading Fightin' Phils (PHI), 3-2. Left-hander Mickey Pena lasted only three innings in his debut, giving up two runs on four hits and two walks while striking out two. Nate Reed took the loss after allowing the go-ahead run in the home half of the seventh inning.
Mookie Betts led off the game with a double and was promptly driven in by Travis Shaw to give the Sea Dogs the early lead. Blake Swihart also led off the second inning with a double and was driven home two batters later to give the Sea Dogs the early 2-0 lead.
The Salem Red Sox jumped out to an early lead and never gave it up, beating the Myrtle Beach Pelicans (TEX) by a score of 5-2. After finishing last season with 11 straight victories and having won three straight this year, Salem has now tied a franchise record with 14 straight wins. Luis Diaz was locked in, giving up only three hits, walking none, and striking out three in his five-inning season debut. Justin Haley went three innings after Diaz and gave up both of the Pelicans' runs on four hits, including a home run.
Designated hitter Matt Gedman notched a two-run double in the first and was then driven in by a Reed Gragnani single to give the Red Sox an early 3-0 advantage. Gragnani accounted for four of Salem's 12 hits on the night.
Behind a dominant start from Pat Light (pictured, above), The Greenville Drive downed the Kannapolis Intimidators (CHW), 8-2. Light, making his first start of 2014, went six innings, allowing one run on four hits while striking out 10 and walking none. Reliever Jonathan Aro made things interesting in the ninth, walking two straight and giving up a single to load the bases before striking out the side to end the game.
Five Drive players collected two hits, and center fielder Jesus Loya was the only starter to not have a hit in the game. Leading 2-1 going into the third, The Drive broke out, putting six runs on the board in the inning. Aaron King and Zach Kapstein each had RBI doubles in the frame, while Tzu-wei Lin and Jimmy Rider had RBI of their own.
Player of the day: Pat Light opened 2014 with a bang, as he struck out 10 in six innings pitched. A first round pick of the Red Sox in 2012, the 23-year-old battled a hamstring injury for much of 2013 which led to some mixed results. Light compiled an 8.89 ERA after giving up 28 earned runs in 28.3 innings pitched last season for Greenville. Though in his first professional season, 2012 spent at Lowell, Light impressed, pitching to a 2.37 ERA in 12 games started.
Photo credit: Pat Light by Kelly O'Connor of sittingstill.smugmug.com