Pelicans pound Salem in series opener

For the second time in as many days and the third time in the last week, the Salem Sox experienced their worst loss of the season. After falling 8-0 to Winston-Salem on Monday and losing 13-4 to Potomac on Saturday, the scuffling Sox were trounced 16-3 by Myrtle Beach on Sunday evening at TicketReturn.Com Field.

The Pelicans pounded three home runs and went 9-for-14 with runners in scoring position, jumping to an 8-0 lead and then blowing it open with a five-run last of the seventh. Shannon Wilkerson and Carson Blair both homered for the Red Sox in the defeat.

Zach DeVore tossed four and two-thirds scoreless innings out of the Pelican bullpen to earn his first Carolina League win, while Jeremy Williams went 4-for-5 and blasted his first Carolina League homer for Myrtle Beach. The Pelicans led 2-zip after one, 3-zip after two, and knocked Salem starter Charle Rosario out of the game in the third with a five-run frame, culminating in a two-run homer from Teodoro Martinez.

Down 8-0, Blair belted his first home run of the season in the fourth to break the seal for Salem, and Shannon Wilkerson launched a two-run homer in the fifth to make it 8-3. With the gap only five, Salem had runners at first and second and nobody out in the fifth, but the Sox failed to capitalize on the opportunity.

Smelling blood, the Pelicans reestablished their eight-run cushion with a three-run fifth to lead 11-3.  In the last of the seventh, Ryan Pressly retired just one of the six batters he faced, with Myrtle Beach scoring five more times. Christian Villanueva began the rally with a solo homer, while Martinez drove in his third run for the Birds.

Five Pelicans finished with multiple hits and seven drove in runs, led by Williams who brought home four. Brandon Jacobs was the only member of the Sox to deliver multiple hits, going 2-for-4. Salem went just 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position.

Having lost the last two games by the aggregate score of 30-7, Salem will look to snap their three-game skid on Monday night in Myrtle Beach. Keith Couch will make the start against Kyle  Hendricks, with the first pitch set for 7:05.

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