P-Nats shut out by Salem for second straight night
For the second consecutive night, the Salem Red Sox (53-37, 13-8) kept the Potomac Nationals (39-50, 6-13) off the scoreboard. After a 6-0 shutout loss Wednesday night, Potomac fell 4-0 Thursday night at Haley Toyota Field. Despite more hits than the Red Sox, two home runs from Salem proved to be the difference in the game.
Salem struck in the bottom of the first inning against RHP Luis Reyes (L, 5-10). With two outs, DH Josh Ockimey lifted his ninth home run of the season over the left field wall, which made it 1-0 Salem and proved to be the difference in the game. After Reyes then tossed three straight scoreless frames and put two outs on the board in the fifth inning, 1B Jordan Betts hit a 2-2 pitch over the left field wall for a two-run home run. The second two-out home run of the night for the Red Sox made it 3-0 after five innings.
The P-Nats had chances throughout the night against RHP Roniel Raudes (W, 3-6). Potomac tallied three singles in the second inning, but CF Tate Matheny threw out SS Edwin Lora at the plate on a single by RF Rhett Wiseman, Potomac’s only hit with a man in scoring position in the game. The P-Nats left men two on in the second inning, a man at third base in the third frame, and men at the corners in the fourth inning. Raudes allowed just four hits over five-shutout frames.
Out of the Salem bullpen, LHP Logan Boyd allowed just one hit over 2.2 innings and departed for RHP Austin Glorius with two outs in the eighth. Glorius gave up a single to 3B David Masters, but struck out Lora, which ended the inning. The first two Potomac batters then reached against Glorius in the ninth inning before RHP Stephen Nogosek (SV, 4) entered with the tying run in the on-deck circle. The right-handed reliever caught 2B Bryan Mejia looking at a called third strike, while CF Victor Robles grounded into a fielder’s choice out at third base. LF Jack Sundberg walked, which loaded the bases, but DH Austin Davidson took a called third strike, which ended the game.
With four straight losses, the P-Nats sit six games behind Salem in the Northern Division. In an attempt to avoid a season high fifth consecutive loss, Potomac will send LHP Grant Borne (4-3, 2.04) to the mound. Borne has tallied a quality start in six of his last seven outings and has not allowed more than three earned runs in any of his 12 outings in 2017. For the Red Sox, LHP Dedgar Jimenez (9-3, 3.30) will make his second start of the season vs. Potomac. Jimenez allowed just one unearned run on three hits over 5.2 innings in a victory at Pfitzner Stadium on 5/13.
First pitch is set for 7:05pm Friday night. The Potomac broadcast will get underway at 6:50pm with the P-Nats Leadoff Show. You can listen to the Potomac broadcast at potomacnationals.com or on the TuneIn Radio App.