Salem Red Sox squeak past Myrtle Beach in extras
The Salem Red Sox scored both of their runs without the aid of a hit Wednesday night, and they defeated the Myrtle Beach Pelicans 2-1 in 10 innings at TicketReturn.com Field. The win for Salem snapped a 10-game winning streak for Myrtle Beach.
The Red Sox (68-46, 25-20) got off to a fast start against Trevor Clifton in the top of the first, scoring an unearned run when an errant pickoff throw allowed Reed Gragnani to score from third base to give Salem a 1-0 lead. Clifton was able to settle down and shut down the Red Sox in the remainder of his 6.0-inning start.
The Pelicans (64-52, 27-18) struck even in the bottom of the second when Jeffrey Baez laced a solo home run against Trey Ball to knot the score at one.
Despite the homer, Ball had one of his best outings of the season, tossing 6.0 innings and allowing just the one run on four hits. He struck out a season-high seven and walked two in the process of throwing his eighth quality start of the season. The southpaw owns a 2.25 ERA in his two starts in the month of August.
Jamie Callahan was called on from the bullpen and tossed a perfect seventh frame and stranded a pair of Pelicans on the bases in the eighth to keep the game tied. The righty reliever, making his homecoming to the Palmetto State, fanned four batters in his 2.0 scoreless stanzas.
Salem put runners on base in the eighth and ninth innings, but was unable to score against Daury Torrez and Pedro Araujo. Simon Mercedes issued two walks in the bottom of the ninth to put runners on first and second with one out, but was able to escape the jam.
In the 10th, Araujo (0-2) walked Joseph Monge and Gragnani with one out and was removed. Craig Brooks entered and walked Rafael Devers to load the bases, then uncorked a wild pitch scoring Monge and giving Salem a 2-1 lead.
Mercedes (3-2) worked around a one-out single in the bottom of the 10th to seal the eighth extra-inning win of the season for Salem.
The Red Sox complete the series with the Pelicans Thursday night at TicketReturn.com Field. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 pm. Salem has not announced a starting pitcher yet, while Myrtle Beach rolls with righty Preston Morrison (1-0, 1.38). Follow along with the action on the Salem Red Sox Baseball Network, with pre-game coverage beginning at 6:45.