Mudcats narrowly fall 2-1
Carolina falls despite Anderson's strong effort
ZEBULON, N.C.- In a pitcher’s duel, the Salem Red Sox’s hitting came at just the right times to top the Carolina Mudcats 2-1 on Tuesday night.
A home run by the Salem first baseman Matt Gedman was just what the Red Sox needed to hold off and extend the Mudcats’ losing streak.
At the end of three innings, Carolina Mudcats right-handed pitcher Cody Anderson was leading the way with six strikeouts, while the Mudcats’ offense still had yet to have a runner on the bases.
Anderson started the fourth inning for the Mudcats by hitting the Red Sox third baseman Garin Cecchini to put him on first, but he quickly went back to the dugout after a right fielder Keury De La Cruz grounded the ball to Mudcats second baseman Zack MacPhee, who kicked off the double play.
The Mudcats finally broke their hitting slump when shortstop Francisco Lindor singled down the left field line, but he was thrown out after first baseman Jerrud Sabourin grounded into a fielder’s choice followed by aJordan Smith groundout to end the inning and without picking up a run.
Anderson pitched six complete innings, recording four hits, one run, no walks and nine strikeouts. He was replaced by right-hander Owen Dew, who immediately allowedca double off the wall by Red Sox designated hitter Brandon Jacobs.
During the next at bat, Lindor made a heads up play and gunned out Jacobs as he tried to take third on the grounder by catcher Blake Swihart. The Mudcats ended the inning with another double play and kept the Red Sox at 1-0.
The Mudcats could not convert in the bottom of the seventh inning after back-to-back two out walks were issued to Valerio and leftfielder Luigi Rodriguez. Designated hitter Joe Sever grounded out and stranded both runners to hold the score at 1-0 in favor of the Red Sox.
In the top of the eighth, Salem’s Gedman homered over the right-field wall to push the score to 2-0. His homerun was necessary to hold off a late rally by the Mudcats.
Down to their last out, the Mudcats kept things interesting.
Right fielder Jordan Smith hit a line drive in to left field and Red Sox left fielder Matty Johnson slipped trying to make a play on the ball and the ball died in the corner giving Smith his first triple of the season.
Valerio followed up the odd play with his on a single up the middle that looked as if it would be played by the shortstop, but took a weird bounce off of second base. Smith crossed home plate and Valerio was credited with the RBI single to make the score 2-1. Rodriguez struck out to end the game for the Mudcats.
After the game, Mudcats Manager David Wallace said, “Tonight was a fun game. We did a lot of things right and Cody Anderson threw very well…It was a good, clean game, good defense, we just couldn’t get it done like we needed to.”
The Mudcats return to action Wednesday night at 7:15 p.m. at Five County Stadium as they try to even up the series with the Salem Red Sox.