May 31, 2015 at 7:00 AM
5/31 Cup of Coffee: It was a feast-or-famine night for the minor league affiliates, with Pawtucket and Greenville having no trouble scoring runs while Portland and Salem combined to generate just three. A stellar start from right hander Aaron Wilkerson wasn't enough to earn Salem a win, while Yoan Moncada (pictured, right) and Carlos Mesa led an offensive barrage for the Drive.
Left fielder Travis Shaw's three-run home run in the bottom of the third propelled the PawSox to a one-run victory over Louisville. Shaw finished 1 for 3 with a walk and three RBI. Allen Craig also continues to swing a hot bat since his demotion from Boston. The right fielder went 2 for 2 with a home run and two walks in the victory, improving his batting average to .345 through 14 games in Triple-A. Pawtucket now sits one game behind Rochester in the International League North standings.
Starter Henry Owens went six innings, allowing seven hits, two walks and four runs while striking out three. The left hander was pulled in favor of Dayan Diaz after giving up three runs in the bottom of the sixth, which tied the game at 4-4. Diaz earned the win, his first of the season, after tossing two scoreless innings in relief. Dana Eveland got his second save with a clean frame in the top of the ninth.
Portland's offense couldn't get off the ground, as only two players posted multi-hit games. The lineup as a whole finished 6 for 30. Those two players were shortstop Marco Hernandez, who went 2 for 4 with a double and one run scored, and center fielder Blake Tekotte, who went 2 for 2 with a walk and an RBI double. First baseman Jantzen Witte contributed the Sea Dogs' other RBI, his team leading 35th, on a sacrifice fly.
Starter Mike Augliera lasted just four innings and was replaced by 2012 seventh-round pick Kyle Kraus in the bottom of the fifth after giving up six runs, two of them earned, on eight hits. Augliera also struck out six and allowed one walk. Kraus slowed Trenton's offense but failed to stop it, allowing two runs on four hits across three frames. Left hander Robby Scott tossed the final inning for Portland, striking out two and not allowing a hit or run.
Designated hitter Sam Travis went 3 for 4 with a double, but was the exception to the rule as Salem struggled to string together any meaningful offense. Shortstop Jose Vincio went 2 for 4, and center fielder Cole Sturgeon hit a triple and scored the Red Sox' lone run, finishing 1 for 3.
Starter Aaron Wilkerson was excellent, tossing six innings and allowing just three hits and one run while punching out nine, tying a career high. Wilkerson hasn't missed a beat since his promotion from Greenville, and now owns a 0.71 ERA and 0.62 WHIP through 25 1/3 innings pitched for the Red Sox. Right hander Chandler Shepherd earned the loss after giving up two runs in the final two frames.
Second baseman Yoan Moncada hit his first minor league home run in what was a stellar night at the plate for Greenville. Greenville dominated in an 11-run rout in which more than half the lineup posted a multi-hit game. The middle of the lineup– Cisco Tellez, Carlos Mesa (pictured, right) and Moncada, respectively – were a murderers' row for the Drive. Tellez finished 2 for 4 with two doubles, an RBI and two runs scored. Mesa went 3 for 5 with a home run, three RBI and two runs scored, and Moncada finished 2 for 5 with a double, a home run, 3 RBI and two runs scored.
21-year-old left hander Jalen Beeks threw seven innings and improved to 5-1 with the win, allowing four runs on five hits while punching out four. Right hander Ryan Harris tossed two clean innings in relief to seal the victory, striking out two and facing only seven batters.
Rain suspended the game in the fourth inning with the RedSox1 leading 4-2. Christopher Acosta started the game and pitched two innings giving up five hits and two earned runs while striking out three. Jesus Perez hit an RBI double and scored on a Reinaldo Uguegto single in the fourth inning before the game was suspended. Perez led the team with two hits.
Player of the Night: Yoan Moncada had perhaps the best offensive night of all of his Greenville teammates, smashing his first home run of the season and finishing 2 for 5 with a double, 3 RBI and two runs scored. His impressive show of power and run production were enough to earn him his first Player of the Night honors.
Photo Credit: Yoan Moncada and Carlos Mesa by Kelly O'Connor