Wednesday, April 23, 2014
By ALLEN LESSELS Special to the Press Herald
MANCHESTER, N.H. - Different night. Same result.
WHO: Reading Fightin Phils (Jessie Biddle 3-9) vs. Portland Sea Dogs (Terry Doyle 0-2)
WHEN: 7 p.m.
WHERE: Hadlock Field
Right-hander Ryan Tepera allowed four hits and the New Hampshire Fisher Cats rode another big inning to a 4-0 win over the Sea Dogs, matching their franchise record of eight straight wins.
Portland's losing streak stretched to a season-high six games and the Sea Dogs were shut out for the fourth time in the last five games.
"We've got to get the offense going," said Portland Manager Kevin Boles. "We will. These guys are working hard at it. We've got the guys who can do it."
The Sea Dogs finished their trip 1-8.
The Dogs begin a four-game set at Hadlock Field against the Reading Fightin Phils Thursday night.
It's not about rival pitchers or playing on the road at this point, Boles said.
"We obviously love playing at home in front of our fans, but we've just got to get this figured out no matter where we're playing," Boles said.
The Sea Dogs had five hits. Peter Hissey batted leadoff and had doubles his first two at-bats, but Portland squandered its scoring chances.
Hissey opened the game with a double to left field and went to third on Derrik Gibson's sacrifice bunt. But Tepera struck out Garin Cecchini and got Tony Thomas on a grounder to short.
The Sea Dogs never got another runner as far as third base and they never had two baserunners in the same inning. Hissey's second double came with two outs in the third and he was stranded there.
"They're in an overall hitting slump and fortunately for us we were able to take advantage of it," said New Hampshire Manager Gary Allenson.
Michael Almanzar also had two hits for the Sea Dogs, both singles, and Cecchini added a single in the ninth off reliever Scott Gracey.
The Fisher Cats scored all five runs in the fifth inning of a 5-0 win on Monday night and all five in the second in Tuesday's 5-1 victory.
The Fisher Cats scored three in the fourth inning Wednesday, bunching four hits off starter Keith Couch.
Couch allowed seven hits and three runs over five innings. Miguel Celestino gave up a hit and a run in his two innings and Rafael Perez pitched a hitless eighth.
The Sea Dogs, who fell to 46-50, have had a rough month. They won their first three games in July, but have won only two of the 14 since, including one of the last 10.
They piled up a season-high 19 hits in their last victory, an 8-5 game at Binghamton on July 12.
But they have scored just one run on 25 hits in their last five games.