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May 7, 2014 at 8:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Pena's pitching leads Portland to fourth straight victory

5/7 Cup of Coffee: Portland was the lone victor of the evening as Pawtucket's offense was quiet and Salem's bullpen blew a late lead. 


Pawtucket's offense had a difficult time with runners on base as they fell to the Toledo Mud Hens (DET), 4-1. Matt Barnes pitched well over his six innings of work, allowing two runs on three hits and four walks, punching out four. Drake Britton and Tommy Layne each allowed a run in their lone innings of relief. 

The PawSox only run of the contest came in the seventh on a sacrifice fly from Alex Hassan. Pawtucket was just 1 for 11 with runners in scoring position and mustered just six hits on the evening. Garin Cecchini and Corey Brown were each 2 for 4 to lead the PawSox offense.


Portland pitching was able to keep down the Reading Fightin Phils (PHI) in a 4-0 victory. Miguel Pena (pictured, above) moved to 2-0 on the season by tossing five shutout innings, allowing just three hits and two walks while striking out five. Nate Reed added three innings of scoreless relief, allowing a hit and walk. 

The Sea Dogs broke a scoreless tie in the third, bringing home three runs on RBI singles from Travis Shaw, Blake Swihart and Henry Ramos. In the fourth, Mookie Betts extended the Portland lead to 4-0 on an RBI single. Ramos was 2 for 4 to lead the Portland offense, continuing his hot start to the month of May. The 22-year-old outfielder has gone 11 for 22 with three doubles, four RBI and four runs scored in six games thus far this month. 


Salem's bullpen faltered late and allowed the Wilmington Blue Rocks (KC) to go home with a 6-3 victory. Pat Light had his best performance thus far in a Salem uniform, tossing five innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on four hits and three walks, punching out four. Justin Haley added three innings of scoreless relief, allowing just three hits and two walks.

Down 1-0 in the third, the Red Sox tied the game on an RBI ground out off the bat of Matty Johnson. Trailing 2-1 in the fifth, Salem would grab a 3-2 lead thanks to Ryan Dent's two-run home run.

That lead would hold until the ninth, when Austin Maddox came on to close out the game for the Red Sox. Maddox allowed back-to-back singles to open the inning, allowing the runners to advance on his own throwing error. Following a walk that loaded the bases, Maddox allowed a grand slam which gave the Blue Rocks a 6-3 advantage. Despite two singles in the ninth, Salem was unable to make any sort of comeback. 


Player of the Day: Miguel Pena, who tossed five shutout innings in Portland's 4-0 victory over Reading. The 23-year-old left-hander had his second straight impressive start, allowing just three hits and two walks while striking out five. On April 30 against the same Reading squad, Pena also threw five shutout innings, allowing five hits and two walks, punching out seven. The 2011 sixth round draft pick has had a decent start to 2014, going 2-0 with a 3.58 ERA while displaying good control, striking out 31 and walking just 10 in 27 2/3 innings pitched. 

Photo Credit: Miguel Pena by Kelly O'Connor.