Comebacker chases Augliera, but Salem still prevails

salem red soxThe reigning Carolina League pitcher of the week from July 1-7 didn’t see his good fortunes continue into Tuesday’s outing, but his team still scrapped for an 8-6 win over the Myrtle Beach Pelicans. The Red Sox staged a streak of six straight runs to comeback for the victory.

Salem starter Mike Augliera gave everyone a scare when a line drive comebacker hit him in the right leg in the top of the second inning. He was removed from the game, but walked off under his own power.

After Heri Quevedo allowed both of Augliera’s inherited runners to score, the Sox starter finished with a line of one and two thirds innings pitched, three hits, four runs (two earned), two walks, and no strikeouts. He faced some bad luck in the first inning as well, when for the third time against Salem this season, a batted ball hit an umpire, resulting in an automatic hit for the batting team. The fluky single by Rougned Odor would have made for an easy double play had it not grazed base umpire J.J. January. Myrtle Beach would go on to score two runs, neither of which would have come home if not for the Odor single.

Quevedo would end up pitching well for the Sox overall. He pitched three and one third innings of scoreless baseball, allowing four hits.

Salem tied the game up 2-2 in the bottom of the first on a double by Brandon Jacobs that was roped down the left field line. Trailing 4-2 entering the bottom of the second, the Red Sox gained the lead after the first four batters reached, and three of them were driven in. A single by Henry Ramos and two sac flies (off the bats of Jacobs and Stefan Welch) put the Sox ahead 5-4.

Erratic Myrtle Beach starter Victor Payano allowed five runs in just two innings. His replacement Randol Rojas didn’t fare all that much better, giving up three runs in three innings. Salem scored twice in the third when Mookie Betts collected his first hit as a member of the Advanced A Red Sox with a leadoff double, Cody Koback doubled (only advancing Betts to third), and David Renfroe drove both of them in with a single in his first game back from an injury.

In the fifth, Koback smashed a leadoff triple, and scored on a double play groundout by Nick Natoli to make it 8-4.

In the eighth, Matty Ott became the second Salem pitcher of the night to be hit by a comebacker. He stayed in the game, but gave up a two-RBI double produced by Drew Robinson. That made it 8-6 Red Sox, but Nate Striz entered and recorded a four-out save (his sixth).

Quevedo improved to 2-3 with the win, Payano took the loss and fell the 5-5.

The Red Sox and Pelicans meet again tomorrow night at 7:05 pm, with Henry Owens throwing for the Sox against Luke Jackson.

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