Salem Red Sox blank Wilmington, 7-0

salem red soxThree Salem Red Sox pitchers combined to allow only five hits and strike out 11 in a 7-0 shutout of the Wilmington Blue Rocks on Sunday at LewisGale Field.

Salem starter Trey Ball was cruising through four innings, having allowed only two hits to that point. However, in the second at-bat of the fifth inning, a thunderstorm rolled through the Roanoke Valley, halting play for 69 minutes. Ball did not return after the delay and his four shutout innings were not enough to qualify for the win. It did, however, extend his personal scoreless innings streak to 15.2 frames.

Williams Jerez entered for Ball after the delay and worked three scoreless innings, yielding only three hits and a walk. Jerez (1-0) has not given up an earned run since joining the Red Sox, a stretch on 9.1 innings over three outings. Austin Maddox picked up where Jerez left off, striking out four in two innings of work to earn his league-leading ninth save.

Dating back to the fifth inning on Friday night, Salem pitchers have thrown 23 consecutive scoreless innings, the second-longest streak this season, trailing a stretch of 26.2 scoreless innings from May 23-27.

The Red Sox jumped out to an early lead with a run in the third inning. Kevin Heller led off with a double and was advanced to third by a Jordan Weems groundout. Jose Vinicio then spanked a single past a diving Frank Schwindel at first base, allowing Heller to score and giving the Sox a 1-0 lead.

Insurance came in the fourth beginning with another leadoff double, this time from Sam Travis. A wild pitch moved him to third base and two batters later, Forrestt Allday guided a single through the hole to right field scoring Travis for a 2-0 Salem advantage.

Salem added runs in the sixth and eighth to cushion the lead. Mario Martinez led off the sixth with a double and was advanced to third by a Wendell Rijo sacrifice bunt. Allday then lifted a fly to left deep enough to score Martinez from third, pushing the lead to 3-0 Salem.

The Sox put it away in the eighth scoring four times against Ashton Goudeau. With the bases loaded and one down, Heller hit a grounder that was misplayed by Ramon Torres at second, allowing two runs to score. Two batters later, Vinicio appeared to leave the yard with a fly ball near the foul pole in right field, but the umpires ruled the ball did not leave the park and credited Vinicio with a two-run double, making it 7-0.

Martinez, Allday, Weems and Vinicio recorded multi-hit days as Salem won its third straight to improve to four games over .500 for the first time this season at 33-29. Wilmington lost its fourth in a row to fall to 34-29.

The two teams ignite a new three-game series at Frawley Stadium on Monday night at 6:35 p.m. Teddy Stankiewicz (1-7, 4.06) is scheduled to start fot the Sox against the Blue Rocks’ Eric Skoglund (5-2, 3.06). Fans unable to attend can listen to the game on 1240 AM ESPN Roanoke, online at or via the TuneIn Radio app.

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