June 21, 2015 at 7:00 AM
6/21 Cup of Coffee: Greenville inched closer to locking down a playoff berth with its win over Lakewood, thanks largely to six shutout innings from starter Dedgar Jimenez. Right fielder Carlos Peguero continued his power surge for the PawSox, smashing his third home run since joining the team on June 17. Salem's win in game two of its doubleheader featured a well-rounded performance from center fielder Manuel Margot (pictured, right), while a trio of draft picks made their debuts for Lowell.
Right fielder Carlos Peguero's home run in the top of the fourth – his third in two days – helped spark a PawSox comeback, with the team overcoming an early 2-0 deficit to earn the win. The 28-year-old journeyman went 2 for 4 with the homer as well as a double and a walk. Third baseman Garin Cecchini reached base three times, finishing 1 for 3 with two walks and one run scored. Shortstop Deven Marrero went 1 for 3 with an RBI sacrifice fly in the top of the sixth.
Left-hander Henry Owens was solid in his 13th start of the year, throwing 6 1/3 innings and giving up two runs on four hits while striking out one. Right-hander Matt Barnes got the victory, tossing just 2/3 of an inning, giving up two runs and a walk before handing the ball over to Dayan Diaz. The 26-year-old threw the final two frames, earning his first save of 2015 after giving up one hit and punching out two.
Fightin Phils starter Ben Lively held Portland in check, turning in a seven-inning outing and allowing just four hits and two runs. On the other side, Portland right-hander Luis Diaz fell to 0-6 after tossing six innings in his 12th start of the year. The 23-year-old Venezuelan gave up eight hits and three earned runs while striking out two.
Shortstop Marco Hernandez was Portland's lone bright spot at the dish, going 1 for 4 with a two-run home run. Second baseman Carlos Asuaje accounted for half of the Sea Dogs' hits, going 2 for 3 with a walk. The once white-hot Jantzen Witte has cooled off considerably of late, going 0 for 4 in the loss and dropping his batting average to .167 in his last 10 games.
In a game that originally started way back on June 2 the Red Sox fell to the Dash. Salem managed just four hits in this continuation game against Winston-Salem. The bottom of the order provided most of the offense. Catcher Jake Romanski finished 1 for 3 with a double. Left fielder Yolian Cerse and right fielder Deiner Lopez each went 1 for 3 with an RBI. The Red Sox were held scoreless until the top of the eighth inning, and by that time were already in an 8-0 hole.
Ty Buttrey started the original contest and pitched just 1 2/3 innings and left the game trailing 3-0. Buttrey walked two batters and hit one with a pitch in Winston-Salem's four-run bottom of the second before the game was called. Left-hander Taylor Grover came on in relief to start the continuation and went 4 1/3 innings giving up three more runs on five hits and two walks. 2013 seventh-round pick Mike Adams tossed the final two frames, giving up two hits and one earned run while striking out two.
Salem pulled a complete 180-degree turn in game two of its doubleheader, with all but two players posting a hit. First baseman Mario Martinez was the best of the bunch, going 2 for 4 with a double and three RBI. Designated hitter Sam Travis wasn't far behind, going 2 for 3 with a triple, two RBI and a walk. The 2014 second-round pick is putting together a solid season, boasting a .313/.378/.467 slash line with 38 RBI – good for fourth in the Carolina League – and an All-Star nod to boot.
Starter Teddy Stankiewicz got the win – his first since May 25 – to improve to 2-8, going six innings and allowing two runs on four hits while striking out four. Manuel Margot helped out defensively with some stellar play in center field, also going 2 for 3 at the plate with a home run. Right-hander Kyle Kaminska tossed the final frame, giving up two hits and striking out two.
Catcher Jordan Procyshen went 2 for 3 with two RBI to lead Greenville at the plate, while third baseman Rafael Devers finished 1 for 5 with a double and one run scored. Second baseman Yoan Moncada continued his recent struggles at the plate, going 0 for 4 with a strikeout. The Cuban sensation, who is still adjusting to the minor leagues, has a .200/.287/.289 slash line since joining the Drive in May.
19-year-old starter Dedgar Jimenez improved to 5-3, throwing six scoreless innings and allowing five hits while punching out two. Relievers Jamie Callahan and Carlos Pinales combined to hold Lakewood scoreless across the final three frames, with Pinales earning his third save of the season.
The Drive victory allowed them to keep pace with the Savannah Sand Gnats (NYM), who also won, keeping the two in a tie for first place entering the last day of the season. The Sand Gnats hold the tiebreaker, so in order to clinch a playoff berth and claim the first-half crown, the Drive have to win their game tonight and hope Savannah loses.
The Spinners jumped out to a sizeable lead thanks to a five-run top of the sixth after being stuck in a 1-1 stalemate, holding on to improve to 2-0. Shortstop Jeremy Rivera led the way, going 3 for 4 with an RBI double, a walk and a stolen base. Left fielder Bryan Hudson went 1 for 4 with two RBI and one run scored. 2015 draftees Tucker Tubbs and Mitchell Gunsolus each chipped in a hit and an RBI apiece, while 17th rounder Chad De La Guerra finished 0 for 5. All three players were making their minor league debuts.
Starter Danny Rosenbaum, with Lowell on a rehab assignment, went four innings, giving up one run on two hits and striking out two. 19-year-old right-hander Daniel Gonzalez sewed things up, tossing five scoreless frames and allowing just three hits while striking out four. The 6-foot-5 Venezuelan is coming off a strong campaign for the GCL Red Sox in 2014, in which he went 9-0 with a 2.25 ERA and 1.04 WHIP in 15 starts.
Another game that was resumed from several weeks ago saw the Sox lose their suspended season opener. Right-hander Christopher Acosta had started on opening day, giving up five hits and two runs before being taken out of the game after two frames. Hildemaro Requena, who had originally relieved Acosta in May, took the mound as the game resumed and drew the loss to fall to 0-1, tossing 4 2/3 total innings and giving up six runs on eight hits while striking out two. Designated hitter Jesus Perez went 3 for 4 with a double, a triple, 2 RBI and three runs scored. Right fielder Luis Yovera went 2 for 4 with an RBI triple.
Perez went 2 for 3 with two triples, four RBI and two runs scored, while center fielder Willis Figueroa finished 2 for 4 with two runs scored. Starter Eduard Bazardo threw five scoreless innings and punched out two en route to his first win of the year.
The DSL Red Sox2's game against the DSL Brewers was suspended due to rain in the bottom of the third inning. Center fielder Lorenzo Cedrola and second baseman Jose Lozada each had hits for the Red Sox, while starter Victor Garcia had allowed three runs on three hits through 2 1/3 innings pitched.
Player of the Night: Outfielder Carlos Peguero has wasted no time making an impact for Pawtucket since being signed on June 17. The 28 year old – who played 64 games in the majors this season between Toronto and Texas – is now 6 for 12 with two doubles, three home runs and seven RBI for PawSox. His showing last night was the key that unlocked Pawtucket's offense en route to a tight 5-4 road victory.
Photo Credit: Manuel Margot by Kelly O'Connor