Lynchburg Hillcats drop opener to Salem Red Sox
Lynchburg (18-22, 50-57) jumped out to an early 3-0 lead against Salem (24-17, 49-59) before the Red Sox took the lead for good with a four-run fifth inning.
Down 3-0 entering the fifth, the Red Sox sent nine hitters to the plate. Elih Marrero walked to lead off the inning and moved to third base on a single from Garrett Benge. Ryan Fitzpatrick plated Marrero with a sac fly to trim the deficit to 3-1. Pedro Castellanos walked and Keith Curcio singled to load the bases. Edgar Corcino worked a bases loaded walk and VIctor Acosta plated a pair of runs with a two-run single, giving Salem a 4-3 edge.
The Red Sox added another run in the fifth on a solo home run by Benge, his third of the season to widen the gap to 5-3.
Salem tacked on some more insurance in the seventh inning when Acosta came through again. Corcino worked a two out walk and scored on Acosta’s RBI double to push the Red Sox’s lead to 6-3.
Lynchburg started the scoring in the third inning. Jodd Carter led off the frame with a walk and eventually scored on an RBI single by Steven Kwan.
In the second, the Hillcats plated another run. Gavin Collins tripled with one out and came home on an RBI fielder’s choice by Carter.
Luke Wakamatsu led off the fifth inning with a single and touched home plate after an RBI double from Tyler Freeman.
The Hillcats went 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position on Friday.
Juan Mota (Loss, 2-1) gave up four earned runs on five hits, walking five over 4.2 innings. Felix Tati allowed a run in 1.1 innings and Manuel Alvarez surrendered a run in two innings in relief.
Dylan Thompson (Win, 4-8) worked five innings and gave up three earned runs on five hits. Andrew Politi fired three scoreless innings out of the bullpen with four strikeouts and Zach Schellenger (Save, 2) tossed a 1-2-3 ninth to nail down the win.
The Hillcats and Red Sox will play the middle game of the three-game set on Saturday. Lynchburg will send left-hander Juan Hillman (4-10, 3.92) to the mound against Salem lefty Jhonthan Diaz (6-6, 4.27). First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. at Haley Toyota Field.
Max Gun and Emily Messina will be on the air at 5:55 p.m. with the Hillcats pre-game show on TuneIn Radio and the Radio434 App.
The Hillcats will return to City Stadium on August 16 when the Carolina Mudcats, A-Adv. affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers come to town for a three-game set. Weekend highlights include First Responders Night on Saturday with post-game fireworks sponsored by Hill City Pharmacy. Friday’s contest will also feature a post-game fireworks show presented by Pepsi. Sunday’s game will be a Sandlot Sunday where all kids in attendance will be able to run the bases after the conclusion of the game.
For tickets or more information, visit lynchburg-hillcats.com, call 434-528-1144, or visit the City Stadium box office.