Sox Stung 6-1 by Potomac in Game 1 Wednesday
SALEM, VA - The Salem Red Sox couldn't keep their comeback magic from Tuesday night alive on Wednesday, dropping a 6-1 decision to the Potomac Nationals in game 1 of their doubleheader at Haley Toyota Field.
Salem (29-34) lost for the sixth time in their last seven games, and found themselves eliminated from the Northern Division race in the first half. Potomac (34-28) cut their magic number to clinch the division down to one.
Potomac got the scoring going in the top of the second inning against Salem lefty Enmanuel De Jesus, who gave up back-to-back singles to Ian Sagdal to open the inning and put runners at first and second. Rhett Wiseman singled Sagdal home, moving Barrera up to third base. David Masters bounced into a 4-6-3 double play, but Barrera was able to score and make it a 2-0 lead. Potomac added one in the top of the third, as Jake Noll doubled with one out before swiping third base, and came in to score on a sacrifice fly to deep right-center by Sagdal.
The P-Nats tacked on some more scoring in the top of the fifth, as Blake Perkins lined a leadoff single off De Jesus on the mound. New reliever Hunter Smith came in and fanned Alec Keller (with Perkins stealing second), but Noll singled Perkins home and advanced to second on the throw home by Chris Madera. Sagdal flew out to deep center to move Noll to third, and Smith allowed him in on a wild pitch to run the lead to 5-0. The Sox loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the inning, but Potomac starter Wil Crowe fanned Roldani Baldwin and Bobby Dalbec to escape the jam unscathed.
Potomac added some insurance in the top of the seventh, as Branden Boggetto led off with a single and moved to second on a walk drawn by Perkins. Alec Keller bounced into a fielder's choice that allowed Boggetto to reach third while Perkins was retired at second, and Noll knocked another in with a single to run the lead to 6-1. In the bottom of the inning, Crowe walked Roldani Baldwin to load the bases with two outs. New reliever James Bourque got to two strikes on Bobby Dalbec, but the Red Sox third baseman drew a walk to score Kemp and break up the shutout before Jerry Downs flew out to Perkins in left-center field to end the game.
De Jesus surrendered four runs on seven hits while whiffing one in four innings. Smith was touched up for two runs on three hits and three walks in three innings and struck out two.
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