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May 21, 2021 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Bello, Jimenez stay hot

5/21 Cup of Coffee: Last night saw a nice mix of great offensive performances as well as great pitching performances. Greenville and Salem combined for 29 runs, with the Drive also getting another awesome outing from Brayan Bello (pictured). Kyle Hart was also terrific in Worcester's win over Buffalo. Gilberto Jimenez stayed red hot for Salem as well. 


Kyle Hart led the way in this one, turning in his second consecutive terrific outing. He went seven innings and allowed just three hits and one run on a solo home run. He walked three, punched out six, and lowered his ERA to 2.70 on the young season. Brandon Workman had a scoreless inning and Kaleb Ort picked up his fifth save with two strikeouts. Michael Gettys belted his second home run of the year in the second inning as part of a 1-for-3 showing at the plate. Marcus Wilson added a three-bagger, while Jarren Duran and Jeter Downs each went 1 for 4 with a stolen base. 


Kutter Crawford struggled for the first time this year after back-to-back terrific outings, giving up five earned runs in just 2 1/3 innings with two walks and just two strikeouts. The bullpen didn't fare much better, as Adam Lau and Denyi Reyes each allowed three runs in relief. At the plate, Pedro Castellanos provided the only two runs with a two-run shot. Grant Williams also had a solid night, going 2 for 3 with a pair of walks and a double. The 25-year old Williams is off to a scorching start, now hitting .371 with a .921 OPS for Portland. 


Drive bats were alive throughout this one, as five players registered multiple hits. Tyreque Reed led the way with three hits, a walk, and five runs batted in. He now has a 1.177 OPS on the year. Cameron Cannon also had a great night, going 2 for 6 with two runs scored and a double. Tyler Dearden, Nick Sogard, and Christian Koss each belted solo shots as well. Michael Osinski contributed with two hits and three runs, while Cole Brannen picked up a hit, a walk, two runs, and two RBI. 

Brayan Bello was fantastic on the mound again, as he punched out 10 batters for his second consecutive outing, doing so with a bunch of swinging strikes. The 22-year old allowed two runs and walked just one. He now has a 2.20 ERA on the year with 23 strikeouts in 16 1/3 innings. Brendan Nail and Zach Bryant each tossed a scoreless inning in relief, with Bryant punching out two. 


The Sox sent Fredericksburg to their 15th consecutive loss to open the season, and they did it with 14 runs on 16 hits. Gilberto Jimenez had multiple hits, which feels like something that happens nightly at his point. He was 3 for 5 with a walk and two runs scored to up his batting average to .390 on the year. He now has an 11-game hitting streak. Nick Northcut roped a pair of doubles, while Nick Decker added two hits, a double, and three runs scored. Matthew Lugo also had a triple and Jaxx Groshans and Alex Erro each picked up a pair of knocks. 

On the bump, Shane Drohan tossed four shutout frames to open up the game with four strikeouts and only one hit allowed. Casey Cobb picked up right where he left off and struck out four of his own in three scoreless innings. Cody Scroggins and Jacinto Arredondo each had one scoreless inning as well. 


Player of the Day: This could have easily gone to Kyle Hart for his second excellent start in a row, but he gets narrowly edged out by Brayan Bello, who struck out 10 and only issued one walk in five innings. Bello's ERA wasn't great in 2019 with Greenville, but he did strike out 119 batters in 117 2/3 innings. He has been dominant so far in 2021 allowing an opponent's batting average of .211 while also posting a 0.98 WHIP. 

Photo Credit: Brayan Bello by Kelly O'Connor