SoxProspects News

July 7, 2017 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Barfield caps monster game with walk-off slam


7/7 Cup of Coffee: It was a stunning comeback win in Portland, as Jeremy Barfield (pictured) connected for the ultimate baseball moment: a walk-off grand slam with his team trailing by three runs in the bottom of the ninth. Elsewhere, Hector Velazquez continued to dominate the International League as the PawSox won a nail-biter, and Logan Boyd and Trevor Kelley had strong outings in their Salem and Portland debuts, respectively. Greenville and Lowell had their contests rained out.

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Hector Velazquez came out on top in this pitchers' duel, scattering four hits across seven scoreless innings. He struck out seven, walked one, and threw 60 of his 95 pitches for strikes. With another dominant outing, Velazquez lowered his Triple-A ERA to 1.48, and he has allowed no runs in five or more innings in six of his 12 starts. Tim Melville (MIN) was matching Velazquez pitch for pitch until the seventh inning, when Steve Selsky doubled and came in to score on a throwing error. Ben Taylor pitched two perfect innings to earn the save.

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The decision by Sea Dogs skipper Carlos Febles to put veteran outfielder Jeremy Barfield in the cleanup hole paid dividends. Down by three with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth, Barfield blasted a walk-off grand slam over the Maine Monster to knock off Portland's northern New England rivals. It was a fitting end to a sterling game for Barfield, who was 4 for 5 with three runs scored. Fellow minor league veteran Henry Urrutia also had a multi-hit effort, going 2 for 5 with a double.

Teddy Stankiewicz struggled in his final tuneup before next week's All-Star game. He surrendered six runs on 12 hits, walking and striking out two apiece. Trevor Kelley, promoted from Salem earlier in the week, made his Double-A debut in relief with a run on two hits in 2 1/3. A scoreless ninth inning was enough to put Jake Cosart in line for the win with Barfield's heroics.

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Salem Red Sox 8, Carolina Mudcats (MIL) 3
A 12-hit attack for the Sox was led by Chris Madera, who was 3 for 5 with a double and two runs scored out of the leadoff spot. Josh Ockimey had a triple as part of a two-hit night, and Tate Matheny blasted a two-run homer in the second inning. Tyler Spoon reached base four times, going 2 for 3 with two walks and scoring a pair of runs. Shaun Anderson got the start and allowed three runs on five hits in five innings. After 15 starts with Greenville, Logan Boyd made his Salem debut coming out of the bullpen. Boyd took well to the role, striking out five and allowing only one hit in his three innings of work.

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Greenville Drive at Rome Braves (ATL), postponed
The final game of the three game set between Greenville and Rome was postponed because of wet field conditions. A makeup time has not yet been announced.

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Lowell Spinners at Aberdeen IronBirds (BAL), postponed
The Spinners got in on the 2017 rain-out extravaganza with their first postponement of the year. No make-up date was announced, and Lowell does not return to Aberdeen this year.

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GCL Orioles 8, GCL Red Sox 7
The GCL Sox were on the opposite side of an 8-7 walk-off as their Double-A Portland counterparts after failing to hold an early 5-0 lead. The game featured standout performances from several batters. Second-round pick Cole Brannen notched the second multi-hit game of his pro career, going 2 for 4 with a walk, run, and RBI. Marino Campana scored two runs as part of a 3-for-5 effort, and Kervin Suarez extended his season-opening hitting streak to seven games.

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DSL Red Sox 4, DSL Royals 2
The usual suspects were key contributors again for the Sox. Willis Figueroa extended his hitting streak to seven games with a 3-for-4 day. Figueroa sports a .450/.577/.525 through 17 games. Alexander Martinez was also 3 for 4 and he added his seventh double of the year. On the mound, Gregory Santos spun five shutout innings to lower his ERA to 0.72. Santos struck out three without issuing a walk.

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Player of the Day: Jeremy Barfield has had a winding, 10-season minor league career that has seen him play for nine different clubs and featured a short-lived attempt to convert to the mound. After spending some time with the Sugar Land Skeeters of the independent Atlantic League, Barfield signed a minor league deal with the Red Sox and was assigned to Portland in late May. He's provided both some veteran leadership and a power threat for the Sea Dogs. His walk-off grand slam on Thursday was his seventh home run in 37 games with Portland, giving him a .490 slugging percentage.

Photo Credit: Jeremy Barfield by Kelly O'Connor

 
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