LOUISVILLE, Ky. - In their final meeting of the season, the Pawtucket Red Sox (53-61) rode strong clutch hitting to a 6-2 win over the Louisville Bats (51-62) Thursday evening at Louisville Slugger Field. The defeat clinched the Bats' first series loss since dropping a four-game set to the Columbus Clippers on July 12-15.
In his first Triple-A start of the season, Tyler Mahle (0-1, 4.50) earned the loss as he allowed seven hits and three runs over six innings of work. Pawtucket starter Mike Shawaryn (1-0, 4.76) earned his first victory for the PawSox this season as he went five innings, allowing four hits and two runs with seven strikeouts and four walks.
After a quiet first inning, the PawSox broke through in the second with a two-out double by first baseman Jantzen Witte, followed his advancement to third on a wild pitch and score on a RBI single from shortstop Mike Miller. In the bottom half, catcher Tim Federowicz continued the strong start to his Bats career with a two-out double of his own, but a popup stranded him to end the inning. For the game, Pawtucket tallied four two-out RBI and went 6-for-12 with runners in scoring position.
Pawtucket carried its momentum into the third as a pair of doubles added brought home another run. In the following at-bat, third baseman Brandon Phillips extended the lead by scoring second baseman Tony Renda from third on a sacrifice fly to right. Louisville would answer in its turn, aided by a throwing error on a C.J. McElroy single that allowed him to score on a Gabriel Guerrero RBI single. The Bats continued to battle at the plate, drawing consecutive walks, including one with bases loaded, to narrow the margin at 3-2.
Following the inning, both pitchers began to settle in and maintained the margin in the middle innings. Unfortunately for the Bats, the quiet period concluded in the seventh as Brandon Finnegan relieved Mahle. Following a two-out walk to Phillips, left fielder Sam Travis bolstered the lead with a RBI single up the middle. On the next pitch, designated hitter Josh Ockimey broke open the game with a drop-in double, chasing Finnegan for right-hander Domingo Tapia. On the first pitch from Tapia, the PawSox added their final run of the night on a RBI single up the middle from Witte.
The Bats attempted to mount a rally in the late going, first with a double in the seventh and consecutive two-out singles in the eighth, but each frame ended with stranded runners. After stranding two PawSox were stranded in the top of the ninth, McElroy and Trahan reached on two-out singles before a flyout closed the contest.
Louisville will now turn its attention toward a weekend series with the league-leading Lehigh Valley IronPigs. The Phillies affiliate marks the final new opponent to venture into Louisville Slugger Field this season. In their previous meeting this season, the IronPigs took three of four back in mid-April. Right-hander Lucas Sims (0-0, 1.80) will start for the Bats, with southpaw Ranger Suarez (2-0, 3.12) countering for Lehigh Valley.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.