Ohlman Drives In Two To Lead PawSox To Fourth Straight Win

Pawtucket Red Sox Press Release

NORFOLK, Va. — Tasked with logging seven innings, Pawtucket’s bullpen shined and piloted the PawSox to a 4-2 victory over the Norfolk Tides on Wednesday night at Harbor Park, securing a season-long four-game winning streak.

The PawSox (23-27) sent 14 batters to the plate over the fourth and fifth innings, when they tied the game at 1-1 (in the fourth) and climbed ahead for good (with two runs in the fifth). Pawtucket, which used five different pitchers to quell the Tides (28-22), has now won four straight games and only given up four total runs during the streak. Three PawSox relievers combined to retire the final 10 batters of the ballgame.

After Pawtucket received seven-inning starts in each of the first three games of the winning streak, it was the bullpen that was counted on for seven frames Wednesday. Pawtucket starter Marcus Walden gave up a run on four hits in two innings with a pair of strikeouts. From there, right-handed reliever Fernando Rodriguez Jr. (W, 2-1) spun three perfect innings, stamping his excellent outing with his fourth strikeout to cap the bottom of the fifth inning. Fellow righty Ty Buttrey allowed an unearned run in the sixth but finished his inning with a crucial strikeout to escape a jam. Southpaw Bobby Poyner then took over and struck out the side in order in the eighth to highlight his two perfect stanzas. Closer Ryan Brasier (S, 5) fanned two in a 1-2-3 ninth inning.

Pawtucket third baseman Jordan Betts (3-for-4, R, 2B, RBI, BB) notched his second three-hit game of the season and upped his Triple-A OPS to .809, while catcher Mike Ohlman (2-for-5, 2 RBI) and center fielder Rusney Castillo (2-for-5, R) helped bolster the offense. Castillo began the day tied for second in the International League in hits and now has 19 multi-hit games already. Shortstop Ivan De Jesus (1-for-1, BB, HBP before leaving the game in the fifth inning) continued his strong week with the bat.

Norfolk starter John Means (L, 1-1) yielded three runs on six hits and three walks in 4.1 innings.

The Tides struck first in the home half of the second inning on an RBI single from No. 9 hitter and first baseman Ruben Tejada.

Pawtucket leveled the game, 1-1, in the top of the fourth when Ohlman supplied an RBI single to left field to plate Betts, who had doubled with two outs.

The PawSox loaded the bases and chased Means in the top of the fifth inning. Betts then coaxed a bases-loaded walk, and De Jesus was hit by a pitch up and in on the hand to score another run and make it 3-1 Pawtucket. De Jesus did leave the ballgame — prompting Mike Olt, who had been hit by a pitch himself in Tuesday’s series opener, to play second base for the first time in his professional career — and Norfolk manager Ron Johnson was ejected arguing about De Jesus’ check swing.

Norfolk placed runners at first and second with two outs in the sixth inning and, although Buttrey induced a groundball on the infield, Pawtucket committed an error that allowed the Tides to pull within one, 3-2.

In the top of the ninth, Ohlman sprayed an RBI single to right field to score Castillo and double the lead to 4-2.

The PawSox conclude their three-game series with the Tides on Thursday at 6:35 p.m. at Harbor Park. Pawtucket left-hander Jalen Beeks (2-3, 2.74) is scheduled to oppose Tides righty Asher Wojciechowski (2-1, 3.94). Radio coverage on WHJJ (920 AM and 104.7 FM) and throughout the PawSox Radio Network begins with the pre-game show at 6:05 p.m.

The PawSox will return home to McCoy Stadium next Tuesday to kick off a six-game homestand that runs June 5-10 (Tuesday-Sunday). Good seats are available, and fans can visit the McCoy Stadium box office, which is open Monday-Friday from 10 a.m. through 5 p.m., and during all home games. Fans can also call (401) 724-7300 or log on to PawSox.com for tickets.