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June 12, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Ward's scoreless streak ends at 34 2/3 innings

6/12 Cup of Coffee: Thaddeus Ward allowed a run for the first time since May 9, Bobby Dalbec hit his sixth home run in the last 10 games, and Kole Cottam  (pictured) added a double and a home run for the Drive.


Pawtucket Red Sox 3, Louisville Bats (CIN) 2
This game turned into a nail-biter, as Domingo Tapia struck out the final two batters with the bases loaded to pick up the save. Teddy Stankiewicz pitched well to start the game striking out six while allowing two runs in 5 1/3 innings. Trevor Kelley followed with 1 2/3 shutout innings, and Tapia cruised through the eighth before running into trouble in the ninth. Kelley has been one of the top performers in the system this year, allowing only four earned runs over 31 2/3 innings with Pawtucket.

The PawSox took the lead in the top of the eighth after back-to-back doubles from Juan Centeno and Cole Sturgeon. Centeno and Rusney Castillo each had two hits, and Tzu-Wei Lin went 1 for 3 with a double and a walk.


Altoona Curve (PIT) 5, Portland Sea Dogs 4
Despite tying a season-high with eight strikeouts, Denyi Reyes dropped to 1-8 on the season. Portland carried a 4-3 lead into the bottom of the seventh, but Reyes gave up three straight hits as the Curve eventually took the lead. Jake Cosart came on and struck out two in his only inning of work, and Durbin Feltman retired the side in the eighth on only 10 pitches. Cosart still has not allowed a run in his seven innings with Portland.

The big hit came off the bat of Bobby Dalbec, who hit his 14th home run of the season, and sixth in his last 10 games. Jarren Duran tripled on the first pitch of the game, but he was then held hitless in his next four at-bats. Jeremy Rivera went 2 for 4 with an RBI, and Brett Netzer went 3 for 4 with a run and an RBI.


Winston-Salem Dash (CWS) 9, Salem Red Sox 3 (Game One)
Both the pitching and the defense let Salem down in the first game of the night as the staff gave up five earned runs and four unearned runs. Jhonathan Diaz's rough season continued as his ERA rose to 7.51 after giving up five runs (three earned) over 2 2/3 innings. The lone bright spot on the pitching staff was once again Rio Gomez, who fired 2 1/3 scoreless innings. After a rocky first appearance upon being promoted to Salem, Gomez has allowed only two runs over his last 11 innings.

The offense also struggled, with Jagger Rusconi recording three of the team's six hits. Victor Acosta launched a three-run home run, his fifth of the year, but that was all the offense for Salem.

Winston-Salem Dash 7, Salem Red Sox 2 (Game Two)
The Dash got out to a quick start again in the second game as they quickly put Salem away. Salem's starter Hunter Smith gave up seven hits and six runs in 3 1/3 innings as he fell to 0-4. Rusconi again had a good performance, going 1 for 3 with an RBI, and Marcus Wilson went 1 for 3 with a run scored.


Kannapolis Intimidators (CWS) 5, Greenville Drive 4
Thaddeus Ward's scoreless streak came to an end at 34 2/3 innings after he allowed two runs in the second inning. Ward only lasted four innings as his pitch count reached 86 thanks to four walks and seven strikeouts. He gave up two runs, but his ERA is still only 1.99. Triston Casas finally cooled off as he went 0 for 4 with two strikeouts, but Kole Cottam did his best to make up for it as he went 2 for 3 with a double, home run, and a walk. Brandon Howlett had two singles and a walk, but also committed two fielding errors. 


A pair of solid pitching performances and some aggressive baserunning helped the Red Sox put away the Astros. Beiker Pineda got the start and allowed one run on five hits over five innings, and Carlos Velez closed out the final four innings in impressive fashion. He struck out seven and allowed only one hit while keeping the Astros scoreless. 

The Red Sox combined to steal nine bases, with seven coming against the Astros starter who lasted only 3 1/3 innings. Alixandri Alvarez stole two of those bases, and one of them was of home. Alex Zapete went 2 for 5 as he kept his average at an even .400, and Brainer Bonaci went 1 for 3 with a double, walk, and a stolen base. 

It was a rough day all around for the offense of the second DSL squad, as they notched only four hits in the shutout loss. Bryan Gonzalez came back down to earth as he went 0 for 4 with a strikeout, and Giancarlos Santana had the only extra-base hit as he went 1 for 3 with a double. On the mound Reidis Sena took the loss after allowing two runs over four innings, and Gregori Segovia fired two scoreless innings with two strikeouts.


Player of the Night: A 2019 SoxProspects.com Pre-Season All-Star, Kole Cottam is now hitting .346 over his last 52 at-bats. Cottam has also shown a good eye at the plate, though his power numbers are a bit low for a 22-year-old in the South Atlantic League. With that said, he did lace a double and a home run on Tuesday night, and hopefully he can continue to tap into his above-average raw power.

Photo Credit: Kole Cottam by Kelly O'Connor