Tuesday, December 10, 2013
PORTLAND - The Portland Sea Dogs enjoyed two 4-3 comeback victories Saturday against the New Britain Rock Cats at Hadlock Field.
WHO: New Britain Rock Cats (Logan Darnell 5-2) at Sea Dogs (Chris Martin 3-3)
WHEN: 1 p.m.
TICKETS: About 1,800 available
The first game was a continuation of Friday night's game, which was suspended because of fog. Reynaldo Rodriguez walked with the bases loaded in the eighth inning to force home the winning run.
In the second game, scheduled for seven innings, Juan Carlos Linares doubled home the winner in the bottom of the seventh.
Anthony Ranaudo started the second game for Portland and cruised after a rough start.
In the first inning, Ranaudo allowed a walk, a hit batter on an 0-2 count and then a two-out, Evan Bigley home run over the left-field wall.
Ranaudo pitched five scoreless innings after that. He gave up a total of two hits and five walks, lasting two more innings than his last start.
"Progress," Ranaudo said. "There was a better feel for my fastball but there are still command issues. Now it's just about consistency."
Down 3-0, the Sea Dogs tied it in the fourth on a three-run double by Jayson Hernandez, playing only his fourth game this year. He also had two key hits in the first game.
"He's been a terrific worker with a real positive attitude," Portland Manager Kevin Boles said. "He hasn't had much of an opportunity but he took advantage of it today."
In the seventh, Hernandez led off with a walk and was lifted for pinch-runner Jeremy Hazelbaker. Derrik Gibson singled. With one out, Linares crushed a 3-1 curveball to deep center, scoring Hazelbaker.
Reliever Josh Fields (1-1) got the win.
In the first game, several Sea Dogs contributed, led by Rodriguez with two RBI.
Outfielder Shannon Wilkerson is adjusting fine after his promotion from Salem, going 3 for 5 with an RBI.
Hazelbaker, Gibson and Hernandez all had two hits.
Heiker Meneses didn't have a hit, but played a big role with his speed and hustle. He reached on a fielder's choice in the fifth, stole second and scored on Wilkerson's double.
In the eighth inning, with runners on first and second with one out and the Sea Dogs trailing 3-2, Meneses hit a grounder to short. New Britain went for the double play, but Meneses beat the throw to first as the tying run scored.
Hazelbaker then singled when his grounder hit base umpire Travis Hatch. Wilkerson loaded the bases with a dribbler down the third-base line.
New Britain reliever Dan Turpen (3-3), formerly of the Sea Dogs, went to a full count on Rodriguez before walking home the winning run on an inside fastball.
Sea Dogs reliever Aaron Kurcz (1-2), who lost the lead in the eighth on a Chris Colabello two-run homer, got the win when he pitched a scoreless ninth.
Before Kurcz, newly promoted reliever Marco Duarte looked solid with one-hit pitching over three innings, retiring nine of the 10 batters he faced, with two strikeouts.
Both teams played error-free in both games.
NOTES: Infielder Ryan Dent went on the disabled list after straining his left hamstring Friday night. ... Greenville infielder Nick Natoli was called up to Portland to fill in. ... Pitching coach Bob Kipper was absent, attending his daughter Kaylyn's high school graduation in South Carolina. Kaylyn, by the way, will attend Bates College in the fall. ... Red Sox roving pitching instructor Ralph Treuel filled in for Kipper.
Staff Writer Kevin Thomas can be reached at 791-6411 or: