SALEM, VA (Friday, August 31) - The offense of the Salem Red Sox continued to be missing in action Friday night, as the team suffered their second consecutive shutout in an 8-0 rout at the hands of the Lynchburg Hillcats at Haley Toyota Field.
The Red Sox (30-36, 62-72) fell a season-worst 10 games below .500 with the loss, and mustered only three hits and two walks drawn in the game. The Hillcats (39-27, 67-65) cranked out 17 hits (including two homers) and got a great pitching performance from starting pitcher Justin Garza (W, 5-6) to shrink their magic number to clinch a playoff spot to two games. The Sox have been outscored 21-0 and outhit 33-5 over their last two games.
Lynchburg opened the scoring in the top of the fourth against Salem starter Jake Thompson (L, 5-13), who gave up a one-out single to Nolan Jones. Trenton Brooks and Anthony Miller cracked consecutive doubles, scoring two to give Lynchburg a 2-0 lead.
The Hillcats blew it wide open in the top of the fifth. Jose Medina singled to lead off the frame, and raced to third on a one-out double by Dillon Persinger. Mitch Longo ripped a double to right-center to plate the runners. Jones struck out, but Brooks singled home Longo, and Miller belted a two-run dinger to right to run the Hillcats' lead to 7-0. Miller added another solo homer in the top of the seventh against Salem reliever Yankory Pimentel to make it an 8-0 game.
Thompson was knocked around for seven runs on 11 hits and a walk in 4.2 innings, fanning five. Pimentel surrendered one run on four hits in 2.2 innings and struck out one batter. Durbin Feltman whiffed four batters and worked around two hits and and two walks in 1.2 frames of relief.
The Sox will try to find some of their missing offense Saturday in a doubleheader against the Hillcats. Game 1 will start at 3 p.m., and the nightcap will follow, starting no earlier than 6:05 p.m. Radio coverage begins with the pregame show with Ben Gellman and Suzie Cool at 2:45 p.m. on the Red Sox broadcast network.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.