Ryan L. Fox
Welcome PawSox fans of all ages to WBOB’s PawSox Weekly Notebook, a weekly guide to all what’s happening with your Pawtucket Red Sox. As noted in the title of this week’s edition, the big event that happened this week was the PawSox played their first home series of the year at McCoy. This comes in on the heels of their upstate New York road trip. How did the team do then and how did the team do at home? Let’s find out.
*A Week in Review
The PawSox continued their upstate New York road trip with a 3-game set against the Buffalo Bisons in Buffalo New York.
The first game took place on Monday, April 8.
The Bisons took the lead early in the bottom 2nd thanks to an RBI by SS Gunnar Heidt to score teammate RF Jordan Patterson to make it 1-0. Two batters later, LF Andrew Guillotte drove in Heidt with an RBI to extend the Bisons’ score to 2-0.
The PawSox were able to get on the scoreboard in the following top 3rd inning thanks to a sacrifice RBI by RF Rusney Castillo to score a run and make it 2-1.
Then for the next 3 innings, both team’s pitching staff held the other team’s offense off the scoreboard and stymied their bats. It wasn’t until the top 7th inning where the bats came back.
PawSox 1B Josh Ockimey lead things off with a leadoff walk against Bisons RHP Connor Fisk. Two batters later, 3B Tony Renda got on board with a double, putting two runners in scoring position. Another two batters later, SS Mike Miller came to bat. Miller then hit a 2 RBI single into right field to give his team the late 3-2 lead. Then in the top 8th inning, Ockimey added some insurance as he hit a 2-run home run off Bisons RHP Derek Law to extend the lead to 5-2. PawSox RHP Jenrry Mejia was able to close the game as the PawSox won the series opener 5-2.
The next game took place on the following Tuesday.
In the second game of the series, the PawSox jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the top 3rd after two scoreless innings prior. First RF Cole Sturgeon lead the inning with a single into left field and then was able to advance to 2nd on a throwing error by Bisons starter RHP Jacob Waguespack during the next at-bat. One batter later, 2B Nick Lovullo knocked a single into centerfield that drove in Sturgeon for the first run. After a double by SS Mike Miller, CF Gorkys Hernandez hit a sac fly to score Lovullo for the second run of the inning. Then Waguespack threw a wild pitch into the dirt that allowed to Miller scored the final run of the inning.
Th Bisons were able to score their first run of the game in the bottom 4th on a wild pitch by PawSox starter RHP Mike Shawaryn that allowed CF Anthony Alford to score from 3rd to make it 3-1.
In the top 5th, Lovullo lead things off with a single, followed by Miller getting on base due to a fielding error by Bisons 3B Eric Sogard. Two batters later, RF Rusney Castillo came to the plate. Facing a 0-1 count, Castillo took the next Waguespack pitch deep into left center field for a 3-run home run to make it 6-1 with 1 out in the inning. The PawSox almost broke it open as they got 2 more men on base. But 3B Tony Renda grounded out to second base and Sturgeon flew out to right field to end the inning.
The Bisons tried to rally late in the game.
In the bottom 7th, DH Andy Burns lead things off with a leadoff single. He then was able to score on an RBI double by teammate RF Jordan Patterson to make it 6-2. Then during C Patrick Cantwell’s at Patterson was able to steal 3rd base to put himself in prime scoring position. Cantwell then hit a single off of PawSox RHP Domingo Tapia to drive in Patterson to trim the PawSox lead to 6-3.
Then in bottom 9th, Burns lead the inning off with a single off of PawSox LHP Bobby Poyner. Then Patterson hit a double into left field to drive in Burns to make it 6-4. However Poyner then got the next 3 Bisons batters he faced to strike out to end the game and give the PawSox a 6-4 lead.
Unfortunately the series finale on Wednesday was cancelled to cold weather as was postponed to a later date when the two teams would play again in Buffalo (April 29 to be exact).
After their long trip in upstate New York, the team then head back home for its first home stand of the 2019 campaign. The first team that they faced off against were the Syracuse Mets.
In the first game of the series, the PawSox took an early 2-0 lead thanks to back-to-back home runs by 1B Josh Ockimey and LF Bryce Brentz in the bottom 2nd. An RBI single by 3B Mike Miller in the bottom 7th then pushed the PawSox lead to 3-0. The Mets were able to capitalize on a costly error in the top 8th and score 2 runs to make it 3-2. However the late inning rally fell short for the Mets as the PawSox won their home opener 3-2.
On Friday night, the two teams met for the 2nd game of the series.
After 3 scoreless innings of play, it was the Mets got the game’s first score in the top 4th. After 2B Dilson Herrera flew out to center field, RF Rymer Liriano was able to induce a walk from PawSox starter RHP Chandler Shepherd. Then next batter later, 1B Travis Taijeron knocked a 2-run home run into left field to give the Mets the early 2-0 lead.
The PawSox tried to answer back in the bottom 4th. After a ground out by 1B Sam Travis, DH Josh Ockimey reached base via hit-by-pitch and LF Bryce Brentz singled into right field after that. A wild pitch advanced both runners into scoring position as 3B Mike Miller came to the plate. Miller then hit a single into right field to score Ockimey to make it 2-1. However C Juan Centeno hit into a double-play to end the inning.
The Mets added another run in the top 8th thanks to a solo home run by LF Rajai Davis off of PawSox RHP Travis Lakins to make it 3-1.
The PawSox tried to rally and make a comeback in the bottom 9th. Centeno got on base on a 1-out single and was then pinch-run for by CF Gorkys Hernandez. Hernandez got as far as 2nd base and was stranded there as SS Tzu-Wei Lin struck out swinging to end the game and give the Mets the 3-1 victory.
On Saturday, the two teams met for the 3rd game of the series for a midday matinee.
The PawSox got the first run of the game in the bottom 1st thanks to a monstrous solo home run by 3B Michael Chavis off of Mets starter RHP Chris Flexen for an early 1-0 lead.
The Mets scored their first run of the game in the top 5th thanks to a solo home run by 1B Travis Taijeron off of PawSox starter RHP Josh A. Smith to tie the game at 1-1.
But the PawSox answered back in the following bottom 5th.
After RF Gorkys Hernandez flew out to right field, LF Cole Sturgeon hit a double into right field. Two batters later, 2B Nick Lovullo hit a 2-out RBI single into left field to drive in Sturgeon that allowed the PawSox to regain the lead with the score of 2-1. After SS Tzu-Wei-Lin induced a walk, CF Rusney Castillo came to the plate. On a 1-1 count, Castillo knocked a 3-run home run over the right field wall to make it 5-1 in favor of the home team.
In the top 7th, Taijeron got his 2nd solo home run of the game. This time it was off PawSox RHP Domingo Tapia as the Mets pulled closer 5-2.
But in the bottom 8th, the PawSox were able to pull away.
Chavis opened up the inning with a leadoff double before advancing to 3rd on a fielding error by Mets LF Tim Tebow. Then DH Bryce Brentz hit a sac fly into left field that allowed Chavis to score to make it 6-2. After a single by 1B Josh Ockimey, Hernandez hit a single of his own into left field. However Ockimey was thrown out at the plate as he tried to score from first on that play. Hernandez ended up scoring himself on an RBI single by Sturgeon to make it 7-2.
The Mets tried to make some noise in the top 9th as Taijeron hit a 1-out double off of PawSox RHP Jenrry Mejia and then advanced to 3rd on a wild pitch 2 batters later. But Mejia got RF Rajai Davis to pop out to second to end the game and give the PawSox the 7-2 victory.
Then on Sunday, the two teams met for the finale game of the series in another midday matinee. The PawSox scored first thanks to an RBI walk by 1B Josh Ockimey with the bases loaded in the top 1st for the early 1-0 lead. The Mets were able to tie the game at 1-1 the following inning thanks to an RBI single by LF Tim Tebow and then took the lead in the top 3rd thanks to an RBI double by 2B Dilson Herrera.
The PawSox were then able to tie the game in the bottom 5th on a RBI single by RF Rusney Castillo. Then in the following bottom 6th, 3B Michael Chavis hit a solo home run and Ockimey hit a 2-run blast to make it 5-2. The Mets were able to draw close in the top 7th thanks to a 2-run home run by DH Carlos Gomez and were poised to take the lead with 2 men on in the top 9th with 2 outs in the inning. But 1B Travis Taijeron struck out swinging as the PawSox were able to escape with a 5-4 victory.
Where They Stand
We are just midway through the PawSox inaugural home stand of the 2019 season.
They are currently sitting in 3rd place in the International League North with a record of 6-4 (.600). They are 2.0 games back behind the divisional leading Lehigh Valley IronPigs, who are sitting on top of the division at 8-2 (.800).
*Just the Stats Jack
The following statistics are from players currently playing on the PawSox Triple-A squad as of 4/14. This excludes players who were called up, traded, currently on the disabled list, or currently on the temporary inactive list.
At the Plate
(*=min. 20 at-bats)
- 1B/OF Sam Travis leads the team in stolen bases (2)
- CF Gorkys Hernandez leads the team in games played (10) and strikeouts (15). He is currently tied with teammate CF Rusney Castillo in team lead for at-bats (34) and RBIs (8)
- Castillo is also tied with teammate INF Mike Miller for team lead in hits (10)
- Miller leads the team in batting average (.385)* and OBP (.500)*
- 1B Josh Ockimey leads the team in walks drawn (8), SLG (.667)*, OPS (1.126)*, and hit-by-pitch (2). He is also tied with teammate 3B Michael Chavis for team lead in home runs (3)
- There is a 3-way tie between Hernandez, Castillo, and Ockimey for team lead in total bases (18)
- There is a 5-way tie between Hernandez, Castillo, Ockimey, Miller, and Chavis for team lead in runs scored (5)
Start You Pitchers
(*= min. 7.0 IP)
- SP Mike Shawaryn leads all starters in innings pitched (11.1)
- SP Ryan Weber leads all starters in no-decisions (2)
- SP Erasmo Ramirez leads all starters in ERA (1.13)*, WHIP (0.63)*, and opposing batting average (.185)*
- SP Chandler Shepherd leads all starters in losses (2), walks allowed (8), and total batters faced (48). He is tied with teammate SP Josh A. Smith for team lead in hit batsmen (1)
- Smith leads all starters in strike outs (1)
- There is a 3-way tie between Shawaryn, Ramirez, and Smith in leading all starters in wins (1)
- There is a 5-way tie between Shawaryn, Weber, Ramirez, Shepherd, and Smith in leading all starters in game appearances (2) and games started (2)
Outta Da Pen
(*= min. 3 appearances)
- RHP Jenrry Mejia leads the bullpen in saves (3), games finished (4), and WHIP (0.63)*
- RHP Trevor Kelley leads the bullpen in bullpen losses (1) and ERA (0.00)*
- LHP Dan Runzler leads the bullpen in opposing batting average (.133)*
- LHP Josh Taylor leads the bullpen in holds (2) and total batters faced (25). He is tied with teammate RHP Travis Lakins in leading the bullpen in strikeouts (8)
- There is a 3-way tie between Taylor, Lakins, and Runzler in leading the bullpen in bullpen wins (1)
- There is a 3-way tie between Taylor, Runzler, and LHP Bobby Poyner in leading the bullpen in bullpen walks allowed (3)
- There is a 4-way tie between Mejia, Runzler, Poyner, and RHP Domingo Tapia in leading the bullpen in hit batsmen (1)
The following team transaction took place from April 8 to April 14
- Received SS/Util. Tzu-Wei Lin from Boston (MLB) after being optioned
- Placed INF/OF Tony Renda on 7-day disabled list (retro to 4/11) with ha right shoulder strain
- Received 3B/Util. Jantzen Witte from Portland (AA)
As of right now, there are no Boston Red Sox players down in Pawtucket rehabbing for any injury.
The PawSox will be continuing their home stand for the first half of the week. From April 15 to April 17, the PawSox will be welcoming in the Buffalo Bisons to McCoy. Already the two teams have played each other up in Buffalo, New York last week with the PawSox winning 2 out of the 3 games played there (3rd game was postponed for a later date). Last year, the two teams played 9 games at McCoy with the PawSox winning the season series 5-4.
Then on April 18, the PawSox will get a day off before heading out on the road.
They will then travel back to Syracuse, New York, for another weekend series against the Syracuse Mets from April 19 to April 21. In their previous match up earlier this month, the Mets took 3 out of 4 games, including sweeping a doubleheader.
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