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Red Sox Minor Lines: Joe Davis keeps the Spinners alive

Along with an absolutely legendary performance from a Spinners reliever.

Salem W 5-2

Ryan Fitzgerald, SS: 2-4, 1 R, 1 CS

Devlin Graberg, DH: 1-3, 1 BB, 1 R, 1 K

Keith Curcio, CF: 2-4, 2 2B, 1 RBI, 1 K

Kole Cottam, C: 1-4, 2 K

Triston Casas, 1B: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 R, 1 RBI

Tyler Esplin, RF: 2-3, 2 HR, 1 BB, 2 R, 3 RBI, 1 K

Grant Willams, 2B: 2-4, 1 K

Thad Ward: 6 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 4 BB, 7 K (90 pitches)

Logan Browning: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 1 K (23 pitches)

And just like that, Salem is one win away from sweeping this first round series and moving on to the Carolina League Finals. This was a strong all-around effort from the Red Sox High-A club, jumping out to a 4-0 lead after three innings and never looking back from there. Esplin was the star offensively, socking two homers including a two-run shot in the second to score the first two runs of the game for Salem. We talked a lot about him down the stretch as the outfielder ended Greenville’s season with a bang, and he’s carrying it over to the next level in postseason play. On the mound, Ward has just been so steady all year. The righty didn’t miss a beat with his midseason promotion to Salem and now isn’t effected by the bright(er) lights of postseason play. He did walk four in this game, but he was able to work around those control issues for a strong outing and a W. Salem will be back on the field looking for a sweep on Friday night in Wilmington.

Lowell W 2-1

Gilberto Jimenez, CF: 1-3, 1 BB

Cameron Cannon, 2B: 0-4, 3 K

Joe Davis, DH: 1-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2 K

Roldani Baldwin, C: 1-3, 1 HR, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2 K

Nick Decker, RF: 0-2, 1 BB, 1 K

Matthew Lugo, SS: 0-2, 1 BB, 2 K

Jay Groome: 3 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 3 K (39 pitches)

Yusniel Padron-Artilles: 6 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 14 K (90 pitches)

The Spinners were playing for their season on Thursday night, down 1-0 in a best of three with their backs against the wall. They did fall behind early 1-0, but Baldwin tied the game in the fourth with his solo homer before Davis played the hero. The big first baseman out of Houston smashed a walkoff homer in the ninth to keep the season alive and force a deciding Game Three on Friday night. The Spinners also got Groome on the mound in this start as he continues to get ready for a massive 2020 season in terms of importance for his trajectory, and he looked solid in this game. The real story, though, was Padron-Artilles. The righty has been fantastic for the Spinners pretty much all year, but this was another level. He struck out each of the first twelve batters he faced and ended up with an absurdly dominant full six innings, with the only hit he allowed being a base hit. Just out-of-this-world stuff in a must-win situation.