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Minor Lines 4/26/23: Not Many Solutions Here...

Three losses, including one pretty rough one, as Portland continues their winning ways.

Syndication: Worcester Telegram Rick Cinclair/Telegram & Gazette / USA TODAY NETWORK

Worcester: L, 1-4

It doesn’t bode well for an organization that prides itself on its depth when the AAA team is 8-14 and guys start getting injured. To suggest that every call-up will be a Jarren Duran case who bats better and plays with more heart after the call-up would be disingenuous. The WooSox, like the Red Sox, failed to capitalize on getting hits with men on, plain and simple. They left 9 stranded in this contest, and batted 0-12 with runners in scoring position. The main offenders were Ryan Fitzgerald, who went 0-4 with three strikeouts and wasted three such opportunities, and lead-off man Wilyer Abreu, who at least got two hits in the contest, going 2-4. For what it’s worth, Bobby Dalbec also got two hits on the night, but struck out his other two at-bats, contributing to the 16 WooSox Ks on the night. Add that to the fact that not a single bullpen pitcher got out of an inning without allowing a hit, it’s all around a decisive loss for Worcester last night against the RailRiders (Yankees AAA.) Not great stuff.

Portland: W, 6-1

At least the Sea Dogs continue to play good baseball! They are 12-5 on the season and starter Shane Drohan continues to look like he’s at the top of his game, going 6 innings, allowing just the one run, two hits, walking just one SeaWolve (SeaWolf?) (Tigers AA) and striking out seven. His ERA is 0.78, and I think, given Worcester’s slow starts to games, they might consider whether it’s time to bring him up soon(ish.) Speaking of guys I have my eye on, as if my watchful eye means anything to this organization, Philip Sikes added another hit but otherwise stayed quiet, going 1-for-5. Nick Yorke and Alex Binelas each got their fourth doubles of the season in this one, and I must be Edwin Diaz’s good luck charm, as he hit his second home run of the year, both in Minor Lines I’ve written. Ceddanne Rafaela went 3-for-5 with an RBI, and relief pitcher Ryan Fernandez struck out all three SeaWolves he faced in the 9th inning. Worcester may have lost in a feel-bad loss, but this is a feel-good win in which nearly everyone contributed!

Greenville: L, 2-16

Ouch, I knew writing too much good stuff about Portland wouldn’t bode well for the rest of the Minor Lines report, but I wouldn’t think it’d be this bad. The Drive couldn’t have allowed 16 runs on one of Dan Secatore or Maura McGurk’s Minor Line nights?

Getting right into it, Wikelman Gonzalez, a prospect held in decently high regards, did not have a good night. In 2.2 innings of work, he walked seven Renegades (Yankees High-A) allowing seven runs to score, despite also only yielding three hits. Obviously, the starter going less than 3 innings puts a strain on the bullpen, as Robert Kwiatkowski also allowed seven runs in less than 3 innings of work. Also not great.

The Drive committed four defensive errors yet again, and the bats didn’t look too much better. But I know you’re interested in Marcelo Mayer and Blaze Jordan’s performances, so I’ll tell you Mayer drew two walks going 1-3 otherwise, and more importantly, did not strike out, and Blaze Jordan went 2-for-4. There’s really not much to say other than... hopefully it gets better from here?

Salem: L, 1-3

And finally, another loss from Salem at the hands of the Shorebirds (Orioles A.) Their lack of bats (sound familiar?) and defensive struggles (hmm....) cost them this one in a possibly winnable game. Juan Ramirez put up another good performance allowing just one hit and striking out four in five innings of work, as his ERA still hovers considerably under 1. Unfortunately, he allowed that run and things didn’t get better for the SallySox (we’re not making that happen... don’t worry.... yet.) Miguel Bleis had just one of two hits for Salem on the night, driving in Albert Feliz who reached on a walk, with Lyonell James contributing the other hit. There’s really not much to say about a game that seemed within reach with the offense getting just two hits, so hats off to the pitchers who just got caught in a game with minimal run support. Just the luck of the draw.

I’m signing off until likely the week after next, since I’ll be on vacation from Saturday to Wednesday. I’m leaving my Minor Lines in the capable hands of Maura. As for Tuesday’s Major League game, it’ll be a surprise. See (or, technically, type at) you all 5/7, if not earlier! Be well, and Go Sox!