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May 5, 2018 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Washington blasts three homers as Salem wins slugfest

5/5 Cup of Coffee: The pitching has impressed far more than the hitting down on the farm in 2018, but the force was with the bats on Friday. Standing out from a bevy of strong offensive performances on the night was a monster three-home-run showing by Salem outfielder Kyri Washington. Washington (pictured) is the first Red Sox minor leaguer to go deep three times in a game since Michael Chavis did so last year, leading Salem in a slugfest. Pawtucket staved off a Scranton rally with a big night from Mike Ohlman, while neither a Marino Campana grand slam nor continued production from Cole Sturgeon was enough to get Greenville or Portland back into the win column. 


The PawSox were led by catcher Mike Ohlman, who blasted a solo home run in the first inning and another in the sixth. Jeremy Barfield broke out of a deep 3-for-47 skid, going 2 for 3 with a double and a walk. Mike Olt failed to record a hit, but his three walks raised his on-base percentage to an excellent .432 since his promotion from Portland. 

Starter William Cuevas took a no-decision despite an excellent outing, scattering three hits across six scoreless innings. Cuevas struck out four against just one walk, and he lowered his ERA to 2.93 on the year. It was an uncharacteristically difficult appearance for Williams Jerez. The lefty recorded just two outs while allowing three runs on four hits and a wild pitch. Kyle Martin got credit for the win, striking out a pair in 1 1/3. 


Sixth-ranked prospect Mike Shawaryn had an uneven start for the Sea Dogs, allowing four runs on five hits in 5 2/3. He struck out three, while his four walks were more than he'd surrendered in his previous four starts combined. Jordan Weems, who last appeared with the Sea Dogs while still a catcher two years ago, made his debut on the mound after his promotion from Salem. He went 2 1/3 scoreless, allowing three hits and striking out a pair without issuing a walk. Cole Sturgeon had yet another multi-hit game, raising his average to .400 with a 3-for-4 effort. Danny Mars added a pair of doubles.


A monster game from Kyri Washington powered the Sox. Washington drilled a three-run homer in the second inning, followed by solo shots in the sixth and eighth. The 23-year-old left fielder now has hit safely in eight straight games, with at least one extra-base hit in five consecutive contests. Not to be overshadowed by Washington's heroics were the first professional home run by Brett Netzer and a ninth-inning blast by Roldani Baldwin. Baldwin has a robust 1.153 OPS in his first six games since being activated from the disabled list. 2017 fourth-round pick Jake Thompson earned his first win as a pro, allowing three runs on six hits in five innings. Thompson struck out five and walked a pair.

For more in-depth notes on the game action and player walk-up music, SoxProspects.com Executive Editor Chris Hatfield was in Woodbridge, tweeting live updates from Northwest Federal Field at Pfitzner Stadium.


The Drive's frustrating 2018 continues after they failed to hold onto a six-run lead following an eight-run fifth inning. Marino Campana capped the monster fifth with a two-out grand slam. Campana's 16 RBI lead the team, and his four home runs are more than the rest of the Drive output combined. CJ Chatham doubled as part of a 2-for-4 evening, while Zach Sterry had a single and double in his 2018 debut. Starter Jhonathan Diaz had allowed only two runs through five innings, but ran into trouble in the sixth, surrendering another pair, including one on a solo homer.


Player of the Day: There were several performances that could have gotten recognition on another day, but Friday's three-homer outburst by Kyri Washington is the clear selection. Washington, who was batting .122/.321/.146 after 14 games, now is riding an eight-game hitting streak that has seen him go 14 for 31 with eight extra-base hits to boost that line to .264/.376/.500.

Photo Credit: Kyri Washington by Kelly O'Connor