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Poor pitching, errors plague Mudcats in 18-2 drubbing

Mudcats pitchers allowed 12 earned runs, 6 unearned runs and 3 errors in Thursday's loss.

Poor pitching, errors plague Mudcats in 18-2 drubbing
Carolina right fielder Ollie Linton raised his batting average to .295 after going 2-for-3 with two walks in Thursday's 18-2 loss to the Salem Red Sox. (Photo credit: Tony Lastoria)
May 9, 2014
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SALEM, VA — The Carolina Mudcats fell 18-2 to the Salem Red Sox on Thursday night in a game that was never even close. Poor pitching and defensive errors plagued the Mudcats and allowed Salem to have one of their best offensive outings of the season.

Shawn Morimondo (3-2, 4.01) will want to forget his poor start as soon as possible. The left-hander took the loss after he went 1.1 innings and gave up six earned runs off three hits. The start raised his ERA to 4.01.

The Carolina bullpen didn’t fare any better allowing an additional ten runs.

All told, the Red Sox produced eighteen runs on fifteen hits in just eight innings of play.

Ollie Linton and Jerrud Sabourin were the lone bright spots for the Mudcats. Linton went 2-for-3 and Sabourin reached base twice, while recording a RBI. Sabourin is now hitting .412.

The game did not start the way that Morimondo would have imagined. The Red Sox posted five runs in the first inning alone.

In the bottom of the first, Salem’s Matty Johnson reached base on a fielding error by shortstop Erik Gonzalez, and proceeded to steal second and third base during Jonathan Roof’s at-bat. Roof and Tim Roberson were both walked to load the bases. Reed Gragnani singled to score Johnson and Carson Blair cleared the bases with a monster grand slam to left giving Salem an early 5-0 lead.

Things only got worse from there for the Mudcats and Morimondo. Salem loaded the bases in the second after aJohnson single, a Ryan Dent walk, and another fielding error that allowed Jonathan Roof to take first.

Jacob Lee was brought in for the struggling starter, but immediately gave up a single to Tim Roberson that scored two, and another single to Reed Gragnani that scored one more. Carson Blair doubled to the gap in left center that scored an additional two runs. The Red Sox loaded the bases for a second time later in the inning, and another single from Johnson plated two runs.

After two innings of play, the Red Sox held a 12-0 advantage over the Mudcats.

Salem notched two more runs in the bottom of the third after a two run shot from Roberson cleared the fence in the left.

Carolina showed some life in the top of the fourth with a string of patient at-bats. Three consecutive walks of Jeremy LucasAnthony Gallas, and Sabourin loaded the bases for the Mudcats. With the chance to close the gap, Alex Monsalve hit into a disappointing double play, but managed to score Lucas and advance Gallas to third.James Roberts left the runner stranded at third after a fly out that ended the inning.

The Mudcats added another run in the top of the sixth when Salem appeared to take their foot off the gas. Lucas reached base on a throwing error and took second base on a wild pitch from Kyle Stroup. Gallas walked and another passed ball allowed the runners to reach second and third. Sabourin belted a sac fly to center that had enough hang time for Lucas to tag and score.

Salem continued to pound the Mudcats with more scores in the fifth. With Carlos Melo pitching for the Mudcats, Gragnani and Blair both reached base on walks and were brought home by a Kevin Heller double to deep center. The Mudcats were all but out of the game at this point, trailing the Red Sox 16-1.

The Red Sox added another two runs in the bottom of the seventh.

Carolina will attempt to rebound from their tough loss when they battle the Red Sox again on Friday night.

Daniel is a communication and broadcast media major at North Carolina State University.

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