SoxProspects News

June 11, 2016 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Benintendi homers and Elias twirls gem


6/11 Cup of Coffee: The upper-level affiliates rolled behind stellar pitching from Roenis Elias at Triple-A and a big night at the dish from Andrew Benintendi (pictured) at Double-A. The lower levels did not fair as well, as Salem fell narrowly and the DSL Red Sox were swept. Kyri Washington did salvage a win for Greenville with a three-RBI, go-ahead double.

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With Boston seeking a fifth starter, Roenis Elias continued to make his case by dominating Louisville Friday. The lefty tossed seven shutout innings, striking out seven and walking none. With the gem, Elias’ ERA dropped to 3.54, the lowest it has been this season. While the Bats could manage only grounders and weak popups against Elias, the PawSox ran away with three runs in the first inning and two more in the fifth. It was a balanced effort from the Pawtucket offense, with eight of nine batters notching a base hit. Bryce Brentz and Henry Ramos chipped in early RBI, and Ryan LaMarre doubled, walked and scored a run.

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The Sea Dogs poured in five first-innings runs and continued to add to their lead throughout a rout of Richmond. Andrew Benintendi was at the center of the offensive outburst. He singled in the first, homered to lead off the third, doubled home Ryan Court in the fifth, and squared up another ball in the sixth but right at the shortstop for a lineout. In front of Benintendi, Court and Tzu-Wei Lin walked a combined five times and reached base in seven of ten trips. Aneury Tavarez also ripped a pair of doubles. Staked to an early five-run lead, starter Keith Couch pitched a strong seven innings. He allowed three runs in seven innings to pick up his fourth win of the season. 

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After Salem starter Daniel McGrath shut out Wilmington for six innings, the wheels fell off in the seventh as the Blue Rocks scored four runs to pull in front for good. Salem made things interesting with runs in the eighth and ninth innings but couldn’t quite close the gap. Four hits and four runs in the seventh ruined McGrath’s final line after he allowed just three hits and no runs through the first six. The top of the Salem lineup continued to produce, as Yoan Moncada went 1 for 4 with a walk and a stolen base, and Mauricio Dubon knocked a pair of singles. Each contributed an RBI and a run scored. Nick Longhi mashed an RBI double, but Rafael Devers' hot streak cooled with an 0-for-4 night.

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Kyri Washington was the hero for Greenville Friday. With his team trailing 4-2 in the fifth, Washington stepped to the plate with the bags full and promptly emptied them with a booming double to center field, vaulting Greenville ahead 5-4. The Drive bullpen ensured that the lead held with four scoreless innings. Catcher Tyler Spoon accounted for the other two Greenville runs with a second-inning, two-run home run. Washington and Spoon each finished with 2-for-4 nights while Luis Alejandro Basabe reached three times on two walks and a single out of the leadoff spot. Relievers Adam Lau and Anyelo Leclerc pitched beautifully, holding Augusta hitless over four innings and striking out five between them after taking over for Logan Boyd.

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It was a great night for pitchers, as the teams carried a scoreless tie into extra innings. But a late triple for the Astros drove home two runs in the tenth and the DSL Red Sox1 could not get a rally started. Red Sox starter Juan Perez pitched his second scoreless start of the young season, posting six innings of two-hit ball and striking out five. Perez has allowed just three hits and no runs in his first 11 innings of the year. Eduard Bazardo relieved Perez with a similarly impressive performance: three scoreless innings, one baserunner, and three strikeouts. Antonio Police took the loss out of the pen after surrendering two runs on two hits and a walk in the tenth inning. Catcher Eddy Reynoso’s double was the only firepower the offense could muster in the low-scoring affair.

The Mets scored six runs in the first two innings and piled on throughout the game for a 12-4 beatdown of the Red Sox. While most of the Sox pitchers were shelled — including a six-run, 1 2/3-inning start from Gregory Santos — reliever Ryan Oduber was a bright spot with 3 1/3 innings of scoreless relief and five strikeouts. Offensively, Fabian Andrade and Reinaldo Ugueto each had two hits, but none of the squad’s nine hits went for extra bases.

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Player of the Night: Scoreless starts by Roenis Elias and Juan Perez are encouraging, but Player of the Night goes to Andrew Benintendi, who returned to form with a big night in Portland. After streaking through his first three levels, Benintendi has had more trouble in Double-A, but Friday he was back to his productive ways. He was a triple shy of the cycle by the fifth inning. Benintendi has shown some improvement from May to June, upping his OPS from .531 to .734 and hitting safely in six of nine games. 



Photo Credit: Andrew Benintendi by Kelly O'Connor

 
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