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Salem Red Sox blank Winston-Salem

salem red soxThe Salem Red Sox scored four in the first and led wire-to-wire in an 8-0 shutout victory over the Winston-Salem Dash on Wednesday evening. Henry Owens (five innings), Matty Ott (three), and Manny Rivera (one) combined to complete Salem’s second shutout triumph of the season, while Matt Gedman and Henry Ramos both belted home runs to help the Sox move to within three and a half games of first place in the Carolina League’s Southern Division.

Owens issued a career-high five walks, yet escaped unscathed in his five-inning, 92-pitch, 50-strike performance. The only hit he allowed, a single to Joey DeMichele, threatened to score a run for Winston. But Ramos gunned down Rangel Ravelo at the plate for the final out in the second, keeping the Dash scoreless. Owens struck out six and earned the victory, improving to 4-2 on the year, shrinking his ERA to 3.21.

Offensively, the Sox pounded Winston starter Myles Jay in the bottom of the first, scoring four times on five hits. Garin Cecchini, Keury De La Cruz, Brandon Jacobs, and Ramos each drove in runs in Salem’s opening rally.

Two frames later, Ramos came to bat with two outs and the bases empty, drawing a walk to prolong the inning. Tim Roberson, making his Carolina League debut, singled to right to move Ramos to second. And Gedman launched the first pitch he saw high and deep over the fence in right to stretch Salem’s lead to 7-0. It was the second dinger of the season for Gedman, the son of Salem’s 2012 Hitting Coach Rich Gedman.

In the eighth, Ramos pounded a towering solo shot off Dash reliever Jarrett Casey to complete the Salem scoring. His third of the year capped a 2-for-3, two run, two RBI night for the Red Sox center fielder from Puerto Rico.

With division-leading Myrtle Beach falling again to Potomac in South Carolina, the Sox have crept to within three games in the loss column. The Red Sox have 13 games remaining in the first half over the next 11 days.

Salem will look to make it four out of five against the Dash and six of eight in the homestand in Thursday’s series finale. William Cuevas will make the start against Chris Bassitt, with the first pitch slated for 7:05.

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