September 7, 2015 at 7:00 AM
9/7 Cup of Coffee: It was a great day for some of the Red Sox' top prospects, but no performance was better than Manuel Margot's (pictured), who hit for the cycle for the first time in his career. Andrew Benintendi kept his hitting streak alive with a multi-hit day, and Teddy Stankiewicz ended his season on a high note. The Drive kept their playoff hopes alive with a victory as their wild card race goes down to the wire.
Four runs driven in by former PawSox outfielder Alex Hassan sunk Pawtucket as they stranded 10 men on base and went 1 for 5 with runners in scoring position. Garin Cecchini reached three times with three singles, but the PawSox were unable to gather an extra base hit.
Starter Rich Hill struggled but did last into the seventh inning, facing three batters and failing to record an out before being lifted. The Bisons knocked Hill around, tagging him for six earned runs on 10 hits and a walk. Keith Couch was a bright spot in relief, scattering four hits and two walks over three shutout frames to end the game. The PawSox will wrap up their 2015 campaign on Monday afternoon.
The Sea Dogs snapped a three-game losing streak with a bang, as Manuel Margot hit for the cycle, the first regular season cycle in Hadlock Field's history and the second Sea Dogs cycle of the season. Margot ended the day going 4 for 5 and driving in five runs, good for his season-high. Margot's memorable afternoon overshadowed good days from Keury De La Cruz (2 for 4, double, 2 RBI) and Danny Bethea (3 for 4, two doubles, RBI) and Forrestt Allday (1 for 2, walk, RBI).
Mike McCarthy was shaky on the mound, allowing five runs on six hits and two walks over just 4 2/3 innings. But the bullpen was stellar, and Kyle Kaminska earned his first Double-A win of the season with 3 1/3 innings of shutout, one-hit ball, striking out two. Williams Jerez closed things out with a hitless ninth.
Teddy Stankiewicz delivered one of his finest outings of the season, tossing seven scoreless frames and permitting just five hits while walking two and fanning five. He'll finish his second full season (and first with Salem) with an ugly 5-11 record, but posted a 4.22 ERA over 134 1/3 innings, striking out 72 and walking 30. Opponents hit .282 against the righty on the year. German Taveras and Chandler Shepherd both tossed spotless frames out of the bullpen.
The Red Sox exploded for eight runs, and five members of the starting nine had multi-hit games. Mario Martinez hit his sixth home run and Franklin Guzman went 2 for 3 with a homer, two walks, and an RBI. Mike Meyers reached on a double and a single while Zach Kapstein doubled twice and drove in three runs.
Despite allowing four runs in the fifth to knot the game at four, the Drive plated one in the sixth and held on for the narrow victory. Andrew Benintendi extended his hitting streak to 11 games with three hits, including two doubles. Yoan Moncada had two hits atop the Drive lineup, and Danny Mars went 3 for 4 with a double and three RBIs. Michael Chavis hit his team-leading 16th home run to give Greenville an early lead.
Dedgar Jimenez fell apart in the fifth, allowing four runs after allowing just one hit over his first four innings. But Jamie Callahan stepped up and shut down the Savannah offense, giving the Drive 4 1/3 nearly perfect innings, allowing just one hit and one walk while striking out eight. He earned the win, improving to 7-6 on the season.
With the Asheville Tourists winning on Sunday as well, the Drive still trail in the wild card race by a half a game. A Greenville win and Asheville loss in the final regular season games of the season on Monday would mean the Drive would move on to the playoffs.
Tyler Spoon (2 for 5, 3 RBI), Josh Ockimey (2 for 4, double, 3 RBI) and Austin Rei (1 for 2, two walks, RBI) provided the runs for Lowell, while Roldani Baldwin and Mitchell Gunsolus pitched in with a single and a double each.
Logan Allen made his first start for the Spinners after being promoted from the GCL and was solid, allowing one run and six hits over 4 1/3 frames while fanning two. Logan Boyd earned his fourth win of the year with 3 2/3 scoreless frames, giving up just one hit and striking out three. Yankory Pimentel closed it out with a hitless ninth, punching out two.
Player of the day: It's no surprise that Manuel Margot's first career cycle earns him the honors. The center fielder got the difficult hits out of the way early, saving the single for his last at-bat. Over his last two games, Margot has driven in eight runs, smacked two homers, and gone 7 for 10. As Portland's season draws to a close on Monday, Margot has one more game to improve on his 32 RBI and 26 extra-base hits over 63 games with the Sea Dogs. The 20-year-old is hitting .269/.325/.411 with Portland and is demolishing Eastern League lefties to the tune of a .381 average and .746 slugging mark in 63 at-bats.
Photo Credit: Manuel Margot by Kelly O'Connor
Photo Credit: Manuel Margot by Kelly O'Connor