PawSox Again Fall Short Against Red Wings at McCoy

PawSox news release…

PAWTUCKET, R.I. — For the second time in as many nights, a pair of late-inning runs from Rochester proved decisive, as the Red Wings topped the Pawtucket Red Sox, 3-2, on Friday night at McCoy Stadium.

After Pawtucket (15-16) tied the game, 1-1, in the sixth, Rochester (16-14) scored two runs in the eighth. The PawSox pulled within one in the ninth, but the Red Wings held on for the victory to ensure at least a series split in the four-game set. The PawSox have been held to a total of six runs over their last three games. In each of Pawtucket’s last six games and in 10 of the last 12, neither the PawSox nor their opponent has scored more than five runs.

Rehabbing Red Sox INF/OF Brock Holt batted second and played third base (for his scheduled five innings) for the first time during his rehab assignment. Holt went 2-for-2 with a pair of bloop singles to right-center. He also handled four ground balls, including a slick backhand pick to end the third inning.

Left-handed starter Roenis Elias (right intercostal muscle strain), who was set to make his second rehab appearance and his first with the PawSox, was scratched during pre-game warmups. Right-hander Shawn Haviland, who’d been scheduled to piggyback Elias, started and worked six innings of one-run ball. The Harvard product only allowed three hits and one walk and has now turned in five consecutive quality starts with a 2.53 ERA during that stretch. Friday, though, marked the fourth straight start in which Pawtucket has scored just one run.

Pawtucket reliever Blaine Boyer (L, 0-2) dealt a scoreless seventh but surrendered a pair of runs on two hits in the eighth. Fellow righty Jamie Callahan then made his Triple-A debut with a scoreless ninth (1 BB, 1 K). The 22-year old Callahan, who was drafted by the Red Sox in 2012 in the second round and was promoted from Double-A Portland on Thursday, had fanned 20 without a walk to begin his season.

PawSox catcher Dan Butler (2-for-3, R, 2B) collected his second multi-hit effort of the season, and Rusney Castillo (2-for-4, R, 2B, RBI) notched his 10th multi-hit game.

Rochester starter Jason Wheeler ceded just one run on five hits and no walks over six innings without a strikeout. Relievers Trevor Hildenberger (W, 2-1) and Alex Wimmers (S, 4) finished off the tight victory.

The Red Wings started the scoring in the top of the first. Leadoff man Zack Granite roped a double into the right-field corner, moved to third on a groundout and scored on a sacrifice fly to left from designated hitter Matt Hague.

Pawtucket tied the game, 1-1, in the sixth. Butler ripped a leadoff double off the third-base bag. Shorstop Mike Miller then dropped down a sacrifice bunt, and Castillo capped off a seven-pitch at-bat with an RBI single up the middle to pull the PawSox even.

Rochester restored its lead in the top of the eighth. Granite legged out an opposite-field, one-out double, and second baseman Niko Goodrum reeled him in with an RBI triple to left-center. Hague then lifted a sacrifice fly to right field to score Goodrum and make it 3-1 Red Wings.

In the bottom of the ninth, Castillo led off with a double. After moving to third on a sacrifice bunt, Castillo then bolted home on a wild pitch from Wimmers.

The PawSox continue their four-game series against Rochester on Saturday at 1:05 p.m. at McCoy Stadium. The game was moved up from the originally scheduled time (6:15 p.m.) due to expected rain. PawSox right-hander Héctor Velázquez (2-0, 1.23) is scheduled to oppose Red Wings righty Aaron Slegers (2-3, 5.40).