LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – The Worcester Red Sox (34-24, 73-60) won their third consecutive one-run ballgame with a 3-2 victory over the Gwinnett Stripers (28-29, 61-71) on Wednesday night at Coolray Field, keeping pace with first-place Durham and remaining 2.5 games out of a playoff spot with 16 games remaining in
LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – The Worcester Red Sox (34-24, 73-60) won their third consecutive one-run ballgame with a 3-2 victory over the Gwinnett Stripers (28-29, 61-71) on Wednesday night at Coolray Field, keeping pace with first-place Durham and remaining 2.5 games out of a playoff spot with 16 games remaining in the regular season.
Trailing 2-0 in the fifth, the WooSox rallied with three runs to take the lead against reliever Beau Burrows (L, 3-4). Narciso Crook drew a leadoff walk to bring up Bradley Zimmer, who quickly fell behind 0-2. He took a fastball up high, spoiled a 1-2 heater foul, and then punished a backdoor slider 401 feet to right center. The low liner screamed off the bat at 106 miles per hour, and snuck over the yellow stripe atop the 10-foot wall to tie the game at 2-2. It was Zimmer’s fifth home run of the season, and first since August 3.
David Hamilton, who reached in four of his five plate appearances, reignited the rally with an infield single, beating out a soft grounder to the shortstop. He moved to second on a walk by Stephen Scott, and came home on a line drive single to right from Bobby Dalbec.
Dalbec’s delivery gave Worcester a 3-2 lead they would not relent, thanks to another admirable effort from the WooSox bullpen. A night after holding Gwinnett hitless over the final 4.2 innings, Worcester relievers did not allow a run during the final seven frames of the ballgame.
Chris Murphy (W, 2-3) pitched in bulk relief after Andres Nunez opened, and Murphy allowed just one run (a Dalton Guthrie RBI single in the second) on three hits with two walks and seven strikeouts.
Oddanier Mosqueda (H, 7) recorded the final two outs of the sixth, and Logan Gillaspie (H, 1) had a perfect seventh with a strikeout in his first game since being claimed off waivers from Baltimore. Nick Robertson (H, 2) handled a flawless eighth on ten pitches (nine strikes), and A.J. Politi (S, 13) worked around a leadoff walk with two punchouts in a hitless ninth.
The Stripers started their opening inning with two singles and a walk to load the bases with nobody out, but Nunez limited the damage by inducing a run-scoring double play off the bat of Jesus Aguilar and retiring former WooSox infielder Yolmer Sanchez on a grounder to second.
The series continues on Thursday night at 7:05 p.m., with Worcester stalwart RHP Kyle Barraclough (8-0, 2.77 ERA) scheduled to make his 11th start of the season.
The WooSox return home to Polar Park for the final homestand of the season next Tuesday through Sunday, when fans will be treated to Super Duper Fan Appreciation week in Worcester.