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The Pawtucket Red Sox continued to scuffle this past week, winning just three games while losing five. Two of the losses came in a double-header in Allentown.
Mauro Gomez was called up to Boston late Tuesday afternoon. Andy LaRoche, released by Columbus on June 26, was signed to take Gomez’ roster spot. Mark Prior and Ronald Bermudez remain on the DL.
Zach Stewart pitched well in his first start for the Sox since being traded with Brent Lillibridge for Kevin Youkilis, giving up one run on six hits over 5.2 innings. Alex Hassan singled home Anderson in the first to give Pawtucket the early lead. Then, in the third, Mauro Gomez hit his 17th home run of the year off of Knights starter Charles Leesman to expand the lead to 4-0. Charlotte got on the board in the sixth on a Dallas McPherson RBI single. Will Inman, Daniel Bard, and Garrett Mock combined for 3.1 shutout innings to snap the nine game losing streak.
Brandon Duckworth and Simon Castro matched each other inning for inning, with neither starter allowing a run over seven innings of work. Junichi Tazawa and Jhan Martinez turned in two shutout innings apiece to send the game into extras. With two outs in the top of the 11th, Will Latimer appeared to throw Strike 3 past Greg Golson, but home plate umpire Brad Myers inexplicably called the pitch Ball 2. On the next pitch, Golson homered into the Charlotte bullpen to give the Knights a 1-0 lead. The tying run reached base when Jon Hee was hit by Donnie Veal, but Jose Iglesias struck out to end the game.
Pawtucket took a 2-0 lead in the second on back-to-back-to-back singles from Gomez, LaRoche, and Hassan. Doug Mathis tossed a quality start but was tagged with his sixth loss as the Sox bats were shut down by Charlotte relievers Anthony Carter and Gregory Infante over the last five innings.
Justin Germano showed that his selection to the AAA All-Star Game was no mistake, pitching eight scoreless frames while striking out ten. His teammates gave him all the breathing room he needed, though. Jason Repko kicked off the festivities with a two-RBI single in the second. Mike Rivera followed with a two-run blast in the third to make it 7-0. Rekpo launched a homer of his own in the fifth to increase the lead to nine runs. Andy LaRoche hit his first home run with Pawtucket in the sixth, his sixth of the season. LaRoche hit his third double of the game in the seventh to cap the Red Sox scoring.
Tony Pena, Jr. was rocked, surrendering five runs on seven hits over 4.2 innings. Mauro Gomez homered in the fourth and seventh innings, his 18th and 19th blasts of the year. Pawtucket closed to within one run thanks to a throwing error by Pigs shortstop Michael Martinez, but Phillippe Aumont retired the last five batters of the game to earn his tenth save.
Billy Buckner and Tyson Brummett kept the game scoreless until the sixth inning, when Lars Anderson singled home Ciriaco to give Pawtucket a 1-0 lead. Daniel Bard came on for the seventh and walked the first two batters he faced. A wild pitch moved the runners up to second and third with nobody out, and Tug Hulett grounded out to tie the game. The blown save was Bard’s third of the season. Lehigh won the game on a bases loaded walk in the ninth from Will Inman.
Zach Stewart turned in another good start, giving up just one run on five hits over six innings. Pawtucket took the lead in the seventh on a sacrifice fly from Che-Hsuan Lin. Daniel Bard pitched a 1-2-3 seventh and Alex Wilson didn’t allow a hit over two innings to record his first save.
Juan Carlos Linares doubled home Repko in the fifth to give Pawtucket the 1-0 lead. Scott Podsednik singled to make it 2-0, but was thrown out trying to advance to second. Lars Anderson tacked on an insurance run in the sixth on a sacrifice fly. Clete Thomas and Rene Rivera hit back-to-back home runs with two outs in the seventh to bring Rochester to within a run. The next batter, Michael Hollimon, hit a lazy fly ball to left field that Podsednik started in on and watched it sail over his head for a double.
The Red Wings scored another three times in the inning, with all the runs earned due to the fact that Podsednik never actually touched the ball on the fly. (A great example as to why it’s important to watch game and not just look at the box score.) Casey Fien and Luis Perdomo combined to pitch thee shutout innings out of the Wings ‘pen.
Tags: Andy LaRoche, Brandon Duckworth, Charlotte Knights, jason repko, justin germano, Lars Anderson, Lehigh Valley IronPigs, mauro gomez, Pawtucket Red Sox, Red Sox, Rochester Red Wings, Scott Podsednik, Zach Stewart