The Salem Red Sox are back in town tonight to open a four game series with the Winston-Salem Dash. The Sox will play 7:05 pm games tonight and Friday, a 6:05 pm start on Saturday and a 1:05 pm matinee on Sunday afternoon.
This weekend’s highlights include a t-shirt giveaway and Fireworks on Friday night, a Comic Book giveaway on Saturday and a chance for kids to run the bases following Sunday’s getaway game.
The Sox completed a six game homestand on Sunday, going 3-2 with one game against Lynchburg postponed by rain. Salem split the other two with the Hillcats, winning 6-2 on Tuesday but losing 13-7 on Wednesday.
The Sox took two of three from Potomac over the weekend. Salem won 6-2 Friday and 5-4 Sunday sandwiched around a 10-3 loss on Saturday in front of the season’s largest crowd to date of 5,394.
Salem got the month of May off to an exciting start Monday night, battling back to tie the game three times and finally topping the Wilmington Blue Rocks, 4-3, in 10 innings in Wilmington.
The Red Sox, 15-9 through Monday, followed up a walkoff win Sunday afternoon against the Potomac Nationals with a critical road win, and gained ground in the Carolina League’s Northern Division. Wilmington fell to 4-0 against the Sox, who swept them in three games at Haley Toyota Field in April. Three out of Salem’s four wins against Wilmington have been comeback affairs, and they took a victory in their first extra-innings game of 2017.
The Blue Rocks took the lead in the bottom of the seventh Monday against Sox reliever Jordan Weems (W, 1-1), who walked leadoff man Tanner Stanley. Jecksson Flores dropped a sacrifice bunt to advance Stanley to second, and Wilmington inserted pinch runner Cody Jones, who came home on a single to right by Nicky Lopez to put Wilmington ahead 3-2.
Salem would not be denied in the top of the ninth. Tate Matheny struck out to lead off the frame against Richard Lovelady and De La Guerra bounced out to shortstop, but Michael Chavis lined a single to right, and Lovelady plunked Josh Ockimey, putting runners at first and second. Jose Sermo singled to right field through the 3-4 hole, and Chavis chugged around third, sliding home safely with the tying run. Austin Rei bounced into a fielder’s choice, and JordanWeems retired the Blue Rocks in the bottom of the inning to send the game to extra frames.
The Sox finished off the comeback in the tenth inning against new reliever Andres Machado (L, 1-3), as Deiner Lopez slashed a hard grounder with one out that caromed off Machado for a double to right field. Trenton Kemp grounded out to third base, but Matheny battled Machado and cracked a liner into left to bring home Lopez and put Salem in the lead 4-3. Trevor Kelley (S, 1) came on in the bottom of the inning and worked around a two-out single to end Wilmington’s hopes.
Roniel Raudes took a no-decision, surrendering two runs on eight hits in 5.2 innings while whiffing a season-high seven batters. Weems earned the win, giving up only one run on one hit and two walks over 3.1 innings and recording four strikeouts. Kelley gave up one hit and fanned one in the tenth inning for his first save.
Salem had Tuesday and Wednesday games this week at Wilmington before returning home tonight to open the four games series with the Dash. The Sox are off Monday, then open a six game road swing with their first trip to Buies Creek, a new entry in the Carolina League. As of Tuesday the Astros were leading the Sourthern Division and Salem was atop the Northern, so that shapes up a big series.