Red Sox: Justin Masterson enjoyed an outstanding big league debut, but the Angels scored four runs in the seventh off Manny Delcarmen and Javier Lopez as they stormed back to beat the Sox, 7-5, in the finale of a three-game series in front of another sellout crowd of 37,848 at Fenway Park. Masterson allowed just one run—a homer by Mike Napoli—on two hits while walking four and striking out four in six innings. He is the first Sox pitcher in 41 years to throw at least six innings and allow two or fewer hits in his major league debut (Billy Rohr threw a one-hit complete game against the Yankees in his debut in April 1967). But the first seven batters of the seventh reached base against Delcarmen, Lopez and Hideki Okajima and the Angels added runs in the eighth and ninth, which made David Ortiz' two-run homer with two outs in the ninth irrelevant to everyone but fantasy owners (Francisco Rodriguez recorded the save by retiring Manny Ramirez on a fly out). Delcarmen took the loss, which snapped a streak of 64 straight appearances without a decision. Ramirez had three hits while Coco Crisp was 2-for-4—his third two-hit game in his last four starts dating back to April 13—with two RBI. The Sox begin a brief three-game road trip tonight, when Tim Wakefield is scheduled to start against the Rays in Florida.
Triple-A Pawtucket: Charlie Zink allowed two runs in six innings, but Syracuse scored one run apiece off Abe Alvarez and Dan Kolb to beat the PawSox, 4-2, in front of 8,284 at McCoy Stadium in Pawtucket, RI. Alvarez allowed a run on one hit and struck out one in two-thirds of an inning to take the loss. He's been scored upon in four of his last five outings and in five of eight overall this year. Zink, the reigning International League Pitcher of the Week, gave up nine hits and walked none while striking out three. Bryan Pritz and Gil Velazquez each had an RBI for the PawSox while Jeff Bailey and Chad Spann both had two hits. The PawSox host Syracuse in the finale of the three-game series tonight, when Chris Smith is scheduled to take the mound.
Double-A Portland: Kyle Jackson was impressive in his first start in nearly three seasons, but Binghamton scratched out two runs against relievers Miguel Asencio and Chad Rhoades as the Sea Dogs fell, 2-0, in front of 5,229 at Hadlock Field in Portland, ME. Jackson, who was thrust into a starting role following Masterson's promotion to the majors, allowed just one hit and walked none while striking out three in four innings. It was his first start since June 9, 2005, when he was pitching for Single-A Greenville. Asencio and Rhoades each allowed one run in two winnings. Asencio, the losing pitcher, gave up two hits and one walk and struck out four while Rhoades surrendered three hits and one walk with one whiff. Bubba Bell had a pair of doubles for the Sea Dogs, who were shutout for the first time this season. Aaron Bates (nine games) and Sandy Madera (eight games) each extended their hitting streaks. The Sea Dogs will host Binghamton again tonight, when Matt Goodson is scheduled to start.
Single-A Lancaster: The JetHawks remained stuck in neutral on offense as they fell to Modesto, 5-1, in front of 1,581 in Modesto, CA. The JetHawks have scored just two runs in their last three games. Josh Reddick's sacrifice fly in the sixth snapped a scoreless streak of 22 innings for the JetHawks, who were limited to one run or less just three times in their first 19 games. Lars Anderson and Jon Still each had two hits. Starter Jaymie Russ was saddled with the loss after he gave up three runs on seven hits and one walk while striking out two in three innings. Brian Steinocher was impressive in relief of Russ as he tossed three no-hit innings in which he walked one and struck out one. It was the first scoreless appearance this season for Steinocher. Perhaps the favorable hitting conditions in Lancaster will help the JetHawks, who begin a seven-game homestand tonight against Lake Elsinore. Travis Beazley is scheduled to start for the JetHawks.
Single-A Greenville: Asheville scored five runs in the ninth—three on an inside-the-park home run—to snap a tie and defeat the Drive, 11-6, in front of 4,830 in Greenville, SC. Joseph Guerra absorbed the defeat for the Drive by allowing all five runs on two hits and four walks. He entered the game with no walks in 8 1/3 innings over his first five appearances. Starter Terumasa Matsuo allowed six runs on eight hits—including three homers—and three walks while striking out four in 3 2/3 innings. It was his shortest start of the year. The middle relief was considerably better for the Drive as Ryne Lawson (2 2/3 innings) and Daniel Bard (1 2/3 innings) combined to toss 4 1/3 hitless innings. Lawson walked two and struck out four while Bard continued his sizzling start by allowing one walk and striking out four. Bard has yet to allow a run in 16 innings, during which he's given up five hits and three walks while striking out 23. Mike Jones extended his hitting streak to 15 games by going 2-for-5 with an RBI. Anthony Rizzo had three hits, his seventh multi-hit effort in his last 10 games. Yamaico Navarro had three hits and an RBI while David Mailman, who entered the game 2-for-23 in his last nine games, had three hits. Luis Exposito had two hits as well. The Drive will host Asheville in the season finale tonight, when Jose Alvarez is scheduled to take the mound.
Diehard managing editor Jerry Beach can be reached at email@example.com. To receive a free issue of Diehard, call 888-501-5752.
Diehard spoke recently with Double-A Portland manager Arnie Beyeler, who has steered the Sea Dogs to…