PAWTUCKET, RI - The Pawtucket Red Sox scored three runs over the contest's first three frames to defeat the Durham Bulls 3-2 in Game One of the best-of-Five Governors' Cup Final Tuesday night at McCoy Stadium.
The 2014 Wild Card winners plated the game's first run in the bottom of the first inning, as Travis Shaw delivered a two-out single to center field to score Ivan De Jesus. In the second the home side doubled its lead when Deven Marrero singled to right field, scoring Blake Swihart for a 2-0 advantage.
Durham struck back in the top of the third though, as Ray Olmedo and Justin Christian notched back-to-back one-out singles. After a groundout advanced each runner, Bulls 2014 MVP Mikie Mahtook drilled a single to center field, scoring a pair and tying the contest.
The tie proved to be short-lived however, as Garin Cecchini's sacrifice fly in the bottom of the third gave put the PawSox back on top by a 3-2 score.
The Bulls threatened in both the eighth and the ninth innings, putting two runners aboard in the eighth and loading the bases with just one out in the ninth. The defending champions failed to convert either opportunity though, stranding nine men on base in the contest.
Left-hander Edwin Escobar (1-0) earned the win, allowing two runs on six hits over seven frames, while righty Heath Hembree picked up a four-out save, his second save of the postseason. Southpaw Enny Romero (0-1) absorbed the loss, surrendering three runs on six hits in three innings while throwing 77 pitches. Durham's bullpen blanked the Red Sox the rest of the way, as right-hander Doug Mathis turned in three scoreless frames while Cory Burns tossed a scoreless seventh and eighth, combining to allow just one hit.
Game Two takes place Wednesday night in Pawtucket as RHP Alex Colome (7-6, 3.77; 0-1, 7.20) takes the mound for Durham against Pawtucket LHP Brian Johnson (NR; 10-2, 1.75 in Double-A), who will be making his Triple-A debut. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. from McCoy Stadium.