Monday, December 9, 2013
By ALLEN LESSELS Special to the Press Herald
MANCHESTER, N.H. - Jacoby Ellsbury didn't do a great job of saving an at-bat for Ryan Sweeney when he flied out to center field in the eighth inning.
Jacoby Ellsbury was 1 for 4 Friday night with a double and a run scored in his second game for the Portland Sea Dogs this week while recovering from a shoulder injury.
Bruce Preston/Union Leader
Jacoby Ellsbury of the Sea Dogs scores ahead of the tag by New Hampshire’s Jack Murphy in the third inning Friday night at Manchester, N.H.
Bruce Preston/Union Leader
WHO: Sea Dogs (Jeremy Kehrt 2-2) at Trenton Thunder (Brett Marshall 9-3)
WHEN: 7:05 p.m.
That was OK with Sweeney, who was pinch hit for in the ninth so he could get to Fenway Park early for today's day-night doubleheader against the Yankees.
Things worked out all right for the Sea Dogs, too.
Catcher Matt Spring drilled a 1-2 pitch over the wall in left field for a three-run home run and the winning runs in a 4-2 decision over the Fisher Cats, snapping a season-high six-game losing streak.
"That was a good thing to see," said Sea Dogs Manager Kevin Boles. "We needed that, especially going on an overnight bus trip to Trenton."
Portland plays in Trenton tonight, and Sunday and Monday afternoons before breaking for the Eastern League All-Star game.
Ellsbury, who is coming back from a shoulder injury, didn't say anything about getting on a bus but said he may stay with the Sea Dogs.
"The plan right now is to stay with the Double-A team, but that can change," he said.
Ellsbury had a double and scored Portland's first run in his second game with the Sea Dogs this week.
He grounded out to second, grounded to first and had the flyout to center in his other three at-bats.
"Today I felt a lot better out there then I did the other day," he said. "It was definitely good progress in the right direction."
Sweeney hit a long flyout to left field in his first at-bat and then lined to short and popped to short.
"I felt good with every at-bat except the last one," he said. "On the first one, I could have used that Green Monster. That's pretty deep out there in left."
He hopes to use Fenway's Green Monster today.
"We have a doubleheader and they said I could possibly be activated," Sweeney said. "Hopefully that's the case."
It was the third straight game the Sea Dogs had a pair of rehabbing Red Sox outfielders in the lineup.
Carl Crawford, who played three straight nights from Tuesday through Thursday with the Sea Dogs, was back at Fenway Park working out on Friday and is due to continue his rehab with Triple-A Pawtucket. The PawSox host Syracuse tonight and Sunday afternoon.
Portland improved to 35-52 with the comeback win. New Hampshire had its season-high, five-game winning streak snapped and fell to 35-50.
This series started a string of 12 games against New Hampshire in a stretch of 18 games for the Sea Dogs.
After the trip to Trenton and two games off for the All-Star break, the Sea Dogs pick up with five games in four days against the Fisher Cats at Hadlock Field, beginning Thursday.
Ellsbury and Jackie Bradley Jr. delivered back-to-back doubles to open the scoring in the third inning.
The Fisher Cats bunched three hits in the bottom of the fifth to score a pair of runs and grab a 2-1 lead.
Kevin Howard and Brian Bocock singled to open the inning and John Tolisano moved them up with a sacrifice bunt. Brian Van Kirk scored Howard with an infield single and Jack Murphy knocked in Bocock with a sacrifice fly to left.
NOTES: The Sea Dogs, after allowing 11 runs in each of the first two games in this series, came up with more effective pitching.
Starter Drake Britton allowed five hits and two runs in his six innings and Caleb Clay gave up two hits in two innings and got the win.
Josh Fields struck out two of his three batters and allowed nothing for his fifth save.