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Red Sox Minor Lines: Jay Groome and Nick Yorke lead the day

The top levels were washed out.

Worcester PPD

Portland G1 PPD

Portland G2 PPD

Greenville W 3-2

Christian Koss, SS: 1-3, 1 BB, 1 R

Cameron Cannon, 2B: 1-4

Tyler Dearden, DH: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 K

Tyreque Reed, 1B: 1-2, 2 BB, 1 R, 1 SB

Brandon Howlett, 3B: 0-2, 2 BB, 1 K

Tyler Esplin, CF: 1-4, 2 RBI, 1 K

Jay Groome (SP): 6 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 9 K (81 pitches)

Jacob Wallace (W): 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K (29 pitches)

Alex Scherff (SV): 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K (9 pitches)

The story here was certainly the pitching, but we should start just by noting that Howlett is back in the lineup after a brief stay on the injured list, so it’s good to see that injury was nothing too serious. But again, this is all about the arms, and we have to start with Groome. The overall numbers for the former first rounder still don’t look good, with his ERA still up at 5.36, but he has seemingly turned a corner of late. That has been particularly true with his swing and miss stuff, as he has 25 strikeouts in 25 innings in June. There have still been control problems here and there, but the fact that he’s throwing this often, and missing this many bats, has to be seen as a positive. He still has some work to do, but I wouldn’t be surprised at this point to see him get at least a taste of Portland before the season is over. As for the relievers, Wallace has been struggling all year so hopefully this outing is a turning point for him. And with Scherff, this just continues what has been quietly a fantastic first season in relief.

Salem L 11-12

Nick Yorke, 2B: 4-6, 1 HR, 3 R, 1 RBI, 1 K

Matthew Lugo, SS: 2-5, 1 R, 1 K, 1 E

Gilberto Jimenez, CF: 2-4, 1 3B, 2 R, 1 RBI, 1 K

Joe Davis, DH: 2-5, 1 RBI, 1 K

Jaxx Groshans, C: 1-5, 1 RBI, 2 K

Stephen Scott, 1B: 1-4, 1 BB, 3 R, 1 RBI

Nick Northcut, 3B: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 BB, 1 R, 3 RBI, 1 K

Ryan Zeferjahn (SP): 1.1 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 3 BB, 3 K (46 pitches)

This was a wild game, with Salem entering the ninth trailing 11-6 before scoring five runs to tie it, only to allow the game-winning run in the bottom of the inning. But focusing on the positives, Yorke just continues to turn things around. It was a tough start to the year for the 2020 first-rounder, particularly when you factor in the hype that was growing around him coming into the season. But he’s shown he can be resilient, and with this four-hit game he’s now at a respectable .757 OPS, which is notable considering it was down at .484 at the end of May. This big game extended an active hit streak to seven games.

FCL L 7-17

Antoni Flores, 2B: 1-4, 1 BB, 1 R, 1 K

Nick Decker, LF: 1-5, 1 RBI, 1 K

Blaze Jordan, 3B: 1-4, 1 BB, 1 K

Darel Belen, RF: 0-3

Danny Diaz, 1B: 1-4, 2 K

Eduardo Vaughan, CF: 1-2, 1 BB, 1 R, 1 K

Angel Maita, CF: 1-2, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI

Felix Cepeda (SP; L): 2.2. IP, 4 H, 5 R, 5 BB, 2 K

This was a brutal day for the pitching down on the complex, and for Cepeda in particular as he struggled with his control and paid the price. Offensively, there wasn’t really much in the way of a standout, with Maita having the biggest swing after entering the game midway through. This is his second year in the complex, having put up just a .598 OPS in 2019. I’d also note that it’s interesting Jordan has played third base twice already in this young season. I don’t suspect this to be a long-term thing, but they do seem willing to give him every chance to prove people like myself wrong.

Player of the Day: Nick Yorke

Player of the Day Chart