PORTLAND – Cold and rainy, it was a miserable day for baseball on Sunday at Hadlock Field.

But at least the Portland Sea Dogs salvaged a split of their doubleheader with the Trenton Thunder, dropping the first game 3-1 before winning the second, 2-1.

The games were played in raw, 45-degree weather. And the fans who stayed for the second game also dealt with showers. The paid attendance was 3,743 and several of those ticket-holders opted for warmer surroundings.

Still, if you are a prospect peeper, it was a decent day.

Casey Kelly, the first-round draft pick with the multimillion-dollar right arm, threw three scoreless innings to begin the second game.

Kelly, 20, on a tight pitch count to begin the 2010 season, needed only 39 pitches, efficiently tossing 29 strikes.

Kelly commanded his low 90s fastball at the knees and used his change-up and curve effectively. He allowed two singles in the first inning, but retired the last seven batters he faced. Kelly struck out two and walked none.

“Good to get out there and get a good feel for my fastball,” Kelly said. “Second time around I used my off-speed and mixed it in pretty well.”

Concerning his short outing, Kelly said, “I look at it as if I was going five or six. Just trying to develop more as a pitcher.”

Eammon Portice (2-0) relieved Kelly and got the win for his 22/3 innings of work.

Portice gave up a home run to Brandon Laird on his first pitch in the fourth inning. After a walk and single, Portice settled down and retired seven straight batters, four by strikeout.

Jason Rice relieved with two outs in the sixth and retired four straight batters for his second save.

Portland got its runs in the first inning with back-to-back two-out RBI doubles by Luis Exposito and Lars Anderson.

Anderson went 2 for 4 with two walks for the day. He hit a towering home run into the right field pavilion in the first game.

Anderson is batting .294 (10 for 34) with two home runs and five RBI.

“I’ve felt (good) for a while,” said Anderson, who is relaxed this season after a pressure-filled 2009. “This team is so much fun, and I’m having fun.”

In the first game, Portland starter Stephen Fife (0-1) began by allowing back-to-back doubles, the first a bloop, the second a shot to the left-center gap. He did not allow another run until the fourth inning after three walks and a fielder’s choice.

New Portland reliever Santo Luis gave up a run in the fifth.

Trenton starter D.J. Mitchell (1-1) stymied the Sea Dogs, allowing one hit over five innings.

Anderson’s homer came off reliever Grant Duff, on a nine-pitch at-bat.

“He’s having some good at-bats,” Portland Manager Arnie Beyeler said.

 

NOTES: To make room for Luis on the roster, the Sea Dogs transferred starter Kyle Weiland to the Lowell Spinners’ roster. Weiland stayed in Portland and is scheduled to start Wednesday.

 

Staff writer Kevin Thomas can be reached at 791-6411 or:

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