Salem Red Sox lose rubber game to Dash

salem red soxThe Salem Red Sox dropped the rubber game of a three-game series with the Winston-Salem Dash 7-2 at LewisGale Field Thursday night. The contest marked the final regular-season home game of the 2016 campaign.

Salem (84-51, 41-25) grabbed the lead in the bottom of the first inning against Zach Thompson, when Joseph Monge and Luis Basabe singled back-to-back to open the frame. Following a wild pitch, Nick Longhi grounded into a fielder’s choice plating Monge and giving the Red Sox a 1-0 lead.

The Dash (56-79, 28-37) loaded the bases in the top of the second against Trey Ball, but only could plate a lone tally on a Landon Lassiter sacrifice fly. Winston-Salem took a 2-1 lead with a run in the top of the third when Mason Robbins doubled and scored on a Toby Thomas fielder’s choice.

Ball (8-6) allowed one more run in his 5.0 innings of work, but evaded any further trouble by stranding nine runners on base.

In the bottom of the seventh, Jordan Procyshen launched a no-doubt home run against Thompson (3-5) to narrow the gap to 3-2. The long ball was the catcher’s fourth of the season, and his second at LewisGale Field.

Mario Alcantara set Winston-Salem down in order in the sixth and seventh innings, but was touched up in the eighth. The Dash loaded the bases with no outs in the frame, thanks in part to an error on a sacrifice bunt attempt. Robbins took advantage by tripling off the glove of Basabe in dead centerfield to score all three runs. Gerson Montilla followed with a base hit to plate Robbins and give Winston-Salem a 7-2 advantage.

In the top of the ninth inning, Jordan Betts tossed a scoreless frame, becoming the first Salem position player to pitch since the 2014 season. The corner infielder registered a strikeout and did not allow a hit.

Ryan Riga earned his first save of the season by keeping the Red Sox off the board in the final 2.1 innings of the game.

Despite the loss, Salem finishes the 2016 home slate of games with a 46-24 record, the best home record in the 21-year history of LewisGale Field.

The Red Sox hit the road to finish the regular season with a four-game swing at the Lynchburg Hillcats Friday night. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 pm. RHP Anyelo Leclerc (3-3, 4.62) will get the start for Salem, while LHP Luis Lugo (8-4, 4.13) lumbers to the lump for Lynchburg. Follow along with all the coverage on the Salem Red Sox Baseball Network, with pre-game coverage beginning at 6:15 pm.

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