SALEM (April 19, 2017) - The Salem Red Sox made a miracle comeback again Wednesday night, as Michael Chavis capped a three-homer night with a walkoff, two-run blast to defeat the Wilmington Blue Rocks 7-6 at Haley Toyota Field.
The Red Sox (9-5) extended their season-best winning streak to six games, bouncing back from multiple lead changes to secure the win. Wilmington (5-8) allowed a walkoff victory for the second straight night, as the Sox won Tuesday on a walkoff sacrifice fly by Chad De La Guerra. Salem now has three walkoff victories in the first 14 games of the 2017 season. Chavis' three homers were the most ever hit by any player in a single game at Salem Memorial Ballpark, and it was the first time a Red Sox player had hit three homers since Jose Sermo did it on July 26, 2016 at the Potomac Nationals.
Salem struck first in the bottom of the second against Wilmington starting pitcher Emilio Ogando, who allowed a leadoff single to Mike Meyers before Meyers scampered to second on a wild pitch. With one out, Chris Madera singled Meyers to third base, and Jhon Nunez came up with the RBI single to bring home Meyers and give Salem the 1-0 lead.
The Red Sox extended their advantage in the bottom of the third. Josh Tobias led off with a single to right, and Chavis turned on an Ogando fastball, smoking it over the left-field wall for a two-run blast. The dinger put the Sox up 3-0.
Wilmington got on the board in the top of the fourth inning, as Elier Hernandez pounded a one-out triple off the wall in right-center against Sox starter Roniel Raudes. Hernandez came home on a groundout by Anderson Miller, and Chase Vallot lifted a fly over the left field wall for a solo blast, cutting the lead to 3-2.
The Blue Rocks moved into the lead in the top of the fifth, as Raudes surrendered a leadoff single to Roman Collins and walked Travis Maezes, putting runners at first and second with nobody out. Tanner Stanley took advantage, smashing a double to right that scored the runners and gave Wilmington the 4-3 edge.
Salem drew even in the bottom of the inning, and it was again Chavis who played the hero. He crushed a 2-0 fastball from Ogando over the left-field wall for his second dinger of the evening, knotting the ballgame up at 4-4.
Wilmington retook the lead in the top of the eighth against new Sox reliever Bobby Poyner (W, 2-1). Wander Franco blooped a single into right field, and Collins arced a two-run homer over the right-field fence to put Wilmington in front 6-4.
The ninth inning once again proved to be the trick for the Sox, as Deiner Lopez led off the frame with a solo homer to right field against reliever Andres Machado (L, 1-2), his second of the season. Tate Matheny singled through the left side, and Tobias tried to bunt him to second, but Machado fired to second to retire Matheny, with Tobias reaching first on the fielder's choice.
Raudes took a no-decision, allowing four runs on six hits and two walks over five innings; he struck out three. Yankory Pimentel gave up three hits but no runs in two innings, whiffing four. Poyner earned the win despite a rough outing, allowing two runs in two innings on four hits and a walk while striking out one.
The Sox will try to run the winning streak to seven games Thursday night as they open a four-game set against the Frederick Keys, with southpaw Dedgar Jimenez making the start for Salem against Frederick righty Cristian Alvarado. First pitch at Nymeo Field at Harry Grove Stadium is set for 7:00 p.m., and Ben Gellman's pregame show starts at 6:45 on the Red Sox Radio Network.
The Carolina League All-Star Game returns to Salem on Tuesday, June 20 at Haley Toyota Field. As part of a celebration of 50 years of Carolina League baseball in the Roanoke Valley, the Red Sox will host a skills competition on Monday, June 19. The skills competition will take place at historic Kiwanis Field, the original home of Carolina League baseball in Salem. All 2017 Salem Red Sox season ticket holders will have tickets to the skills competition and the All-Star Classic at Haley Toyota Field included in their ticket package.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.