PawSox Catcher Oscar Hernandez A “Difference Maker” In Win Over Louisville With Home Runs Fueling Win
In a getaway day time of 11:05 AM the PawSox played in front of 7,516 screaming fans the Pawtucket Red Sox defeated the Louisville Bats 5-1.
The starter for the game for Pawtucket was Chandler Shepherd, the reliever turned starter. Shepherd went 6 innings giving up 6 base hits, 1 run, which was unearned while striking out 4 batters and issuing only 1 walk.
Shepherd was getting through the game fine until the third inning, an inning where his defense failed him completely.
Defense continues to be an issue for the PawSox with infielder Mike Miller committing another error, making it back-to-back games with errors for him. The errors didn’t stop there tough with the 3rd inning being another below average inning for Pawtucket. Herman Iribarren of the Bats hit a ball out to Cole Sturgeon in right field who attempted to throw out Dilson Herrera at third base only to throw the ball away causing the run to score to tie the game.
Shepherd had an 18-pitch third inning, an inning that could have easily been a 10 pitch inning. The run was ruled as being not earned with the 3rd inning jam not being of Shepherds fault.
Oscar Hernandez, The Difference Maker
It wasn’t all bad for the PawSox defense though, after allowing a lead-off base hit to Phil Ervin in the 4th inning, PawSox catcher, Oscar Hernandez, gunned down Ervin who was attempting to steal second base. Hernandez did the same an inning later when Dilson Hererra attempted to steal second with 2 outs in the top of the 5th.
We advise not trying to steal on Óscar Hernández.
He’s thrown out a pair over the last two innings. pic.twitter.com/Cwe5LFauzr
— PawSox (@PawSox) June 7, 2018
“I thought he (Oscar Hernandez) was the difference maker in today’s game.” Said Boles,” No doubt about it. He was the guy, two caught stealing’s, caught two pop ups, 8-for-8 blocks, receiving, very athletic behind the plate. He was the difference maker in this game today.”
Shepherd turned in another quality start, his 6th of the season. If his defense had held up better behind him there is a chance he could have went even deeper in this game. But in the 7th inning PawSox Manager Kevin Boles turned the ball over to Ty Buttrey and the bull-pen.
“I thought he was ok today,” Kevin Boles on Shepherd.” Didn’t have his best stuff, didn’t have his best command but he was still able to get through. So I thought overall, especially with the defense behind him today, I thought he did a really good job. He was efficient, kind of extended some at-bats there in the 6th inning, but overall I thought he was pretty good.”
Solid Outings From Buttrey And Brasier
Buttrey had an effective 7th inning and came back out for the 8th. After recording the first out of the inning another defensive lapse occurred. A pop-up right in front of first base by Hererra was lost in the clouds by Ohlman and dropped in front of Buttrey who made a last second lunge at the ball. Ruled as a single but it made the tall righty work a bit harder in the 8th.
The final line on Buttrey was 2 innings of work, allowing 1 base hit while striking out 2 batters on 28 pitches, 18 for strikes.
To close out the game Boles called upon his closer, Ryan Brasier, to shut down the Bats in the top of the 9th inning with a 4-run lead. Brasier was successful yet again in the 9th inning for Pawtucket
Homerun Power Fueling Pawtucket’s Offense
Pawtucket’s offense picked up right where they left off on Wednesday night with their first run coming in the first inning. After Tzu-Wei Lin and Cole Sturgeon got on base to lead-off, Rusney Castillo, grounded out on a hot shot to third to score Lin. But the first inning could and should have been bigger for Pawtucket.
After the Castillo out Adam Lind flied out in back of second base and with Cole Sturgeon running on contact Pawtucket got doubled up on. The trend of not capitalizing didn’t continue though in this game, in-fact, after the first inning pressure the PawSox offense died off. It wasn’t until the bottom of the 5th inning that Pawtucket recorded their 3rd hit of the ball-game when Mike Ohlman singled to lead off the inning.
Following up Ohlman was a fielder’s choice E3 that gave Pawtucket 1st and 2nd with 1 out. Louisville starter Justin Nicolino decided to walk Mike Miller to load the bases for Tzu-Wei Lin. Lin with two runners in scoring position flied out to end the 5th inning threat.
Pawtucket bounced right back though with Rusney Castillo pumping out a solo shot into the PawSox bullpen to give the PawSox a 2-1 lead. This was Castillo’s 3rd home run of the season, all of which have come in his last 10 games.
Business was booming for the PawSox in the 6th inning with Ivan De Jesus Jr. belting out a 2-run shot into the bullpen just 3 batters later to drive in Ohlman who worked a walk. This was De Jesus Jr.’s 2nd home run of the season to give Pawtucket a 4-1 lead heading into the 7th inning.
Ivan De Jesus Jr. extended the lead with this blast! pic.twitter.com/kyhj1diSQ5
— PawSox (@PawSox) June 7, 2018
To give Pawtucket a little more padding Mike Ohlman hit his 6th home run of the season in the bottom of the 8th to give the PawSox a 5-1 edge.
Up Next, Another Series At Home
Up next for the Pawtucket Red Sox is a three-game set at home against Indianapolis starting Friday at 7:05 pm.
The projected starters for that game are:
LHP Brandon Waddell (1-1, 6.14 ERA) vs LHP Josh Smith (1-3, 3.26 ERA)