Woodpeckers Pitching Stumbles in Loss

Salem Smokes 13 Runs in Series Opener

(Joseph Dwyer)

By Maura Sheridan / Fayetteville Woodpeckers | May 13, 2019 11:40 PM

The Woodpeckers gave up the most runs to an opponent this year and allowed eighteen hits in a blowout loss at home. The game was highlighted by four different Salem players earning multi-RBI games as well as a 9 run top of the seventh inning for the Red Sox offense. The Woodpeckers did manage to score the final four runs of the game but the comeback was too much for Fayetteville in the 13-6 defeat. 

Jarren Duran began his 3-for-3 night by knocking a leadoff double on Chad Donato (3-4) to start the first inning. A fly out allowed Duran to take third but the speedy runner was caught stealing after catcher Scott Manea and second basemen Miguelangel perfectly executed the 2-6-2 out to end the scoreless inning.  

The Woodpeckers offense got going in the bottom of the first thanks to a double from Michael Papierski against Salem starter Kutter Crawford (3-1). Papierski scored on Seth Beer's fly ball that dropped in shallow center field, putting the Woodpeckers up 1-0. Jake Adams followed Beer by slamming a two-bagger, however Crawford finished the frame strong retiring the next two batters he faced to leave both Beer and Adams stranded.

After facing the minimum in the second inning, Fayetteville starter Chad Donato did not record an out until the eighth Salem batter in the top of the third. Nick Sciortino opened the frame by drawing a walk after which the Red Sox rattled off five straight hits, including three doubles. That stretch scored all four runs of the frame, with Jaren Durran picking up his second hit of the day on a two RBI two-bagger. Pedro Castellanos tacked on an RBI of his own and Ryan Fitzgerald smacked in his team high 26th RBI of the year. The Woodpeckers weathered the storm as Donato fanned the final three batters he faced to finish the frame with Salem up 4-1. Following that bumpy inning Donato pitched a scoreless fourth and fifth, ending the day having allowed seven hits while striking out eight, in five innings of work.  

After giving up a run in the first, Kutter Crawford faced just two over the minimum pitching four straight innings of scoreless ball. It wasn't until the top of the sixth that the Woodpeckers finally made a dent in the Salem 4-1 lead. Seth Beer stepped up to the plate to leadoff the inning and quickly crushed a homer to right field that put the Woodpeckers within two. Beer went yard for the 9th time this season, securing his spot atop the Carolina League for home runs on the year. The Woodpeckers could not tack on another score in the inning as Crawford struck out both Colton Shaver and Corey Julks to minimize the damage.  

The Red Sox quickly foiled any Woodpeckers comeback plans in the top of the seventh inning as the Salem offense exploded sending up 13 batters, on 11 hits, that scored 9 runs. The biggest inning by an opponent at Segra Stadium included a two RBI double from Jonathan Ortega that brought home both Pedro Castellanos and Victor Acosta. Another highlight came from Nick Sciortino who knocked a triple that scored Acosta himself. Overall seven different Red Sox players earned RBIs in the inning, including two RBI singles from Pedro Castellanos. In order to get the three outs of the frame the Woodpeckers had to send out three different relievers in Nick Hernandez, Jacob Billinglsey, and Leovanny Rodriguez. All three pitchers struggled, each recording just one out a piece in Salem's record breaking frame that saw the most runs, hits, and batters in an inning this season for a Fayetteville opponent. The phenomenal inning also meant the Woodpeckers found themselves in an 11 run hole going into the bottom of the seventh. 

The 'Peckers added a trio of runs in the bottom of the eighth due to a hit by a pitch, an infield single, and a walk that loaded the bases for Corey Julks. The Fayetteville center fielder crushed a two RBI double that scored Seth Beer and Jake Adams and made it 13-4 Salem. Colton Shaver tacked on the final run of the frame thanks to a ground out from Arauz that cut the Red Sox lead to eight. The bottom of the ninth saw another run come through for Fayetteville with two outs. Michael Papierski became the first Woodpecker to smack a triple at Segra Stadium and then made the sprint home after a Jake Adams RBI two bagger. The Woodpeckers could not put together such a lofty rally and ultimately fell 13-6 to the Red Sox.

The month of May has been a difficult one for Fayetteville, as the 'Peckers are 2-9 in the past 13 days. Fayetteville falls to 16-21 on the season while the Red Sox move to 15-20. Monday night was Salem and Fayetteville's first meeting, with game two of a four game series set for tomorrow. First pitch from Segra Stadium is set for 7:00pm.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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