Report from the Fort – Day 4 (Afternoon Update)
“I’ve been in baseball over 30 years and I’ve never seen a play like that.” said Sea Dogs pitching coach Bob Kipper after a freak double play that sealed Portland’s 2-1 victory over the New Britain Rock Cats Wednesday afternoon. A hard hit ground ball deflected off 3B Kolbrin Vitek’s glove directly to SS Nick Natoli, who made the quick flip to 2B Heiker Meneses and his throw to first base was a strike to end the game.
Portland’s offense came from one swing. Catcher Christian Vazquez launched a two-run homer in the second inning to straight-away left field.
The story of the contest was Anthony Ranaudo. The New Jersey native lit up the radar gun, touching 98 on his fastball. Ranaudo retired all 13 batters faced, fanning the side in first and third innings. “It wasn’t necessarily the stuff – it was execution.” said Kipper. “The stuff was there, but he (Ranaudo) consistently kept his fastball down in the zone, which helped his curveball and change-up.”
Miguel Celestino, Manny Rivera and Nefi Ogando all pitched in relief for Portland. The Sea Dogs break camp on Sunday afternoon, so the rosters could possibly be announced on Monday.
Sea Dogs Box Score with a special guest
Wilkerson CF 1-for-3 (Bunt-single)
Bogaerts SS 0-for-3
Shaw DH 0-for-3
Almanzar 1B 1-for-2, BB, SB, RS
Vitek 3B 1-for-3
Vazquez C 1-for-2, HR, 2 RBI, BB
Meneses 2B 1-for-3
Bermudez RF 0-for-2
Natoli SS 0-for-2
Johnson LF 0-for-2
Jarrod Saltalamacchia wanted to get some extra at-bats in and hit four times for Portland. He batted second during innings 1, 3, 4 and 5 – going 0-for-4 and called out on strikes twice…I’m not just saying this but the pitches he was called out on were out of the strike zone.
Earlier today Daniel Bard was assigned to Portland…Sox Pitching Coach Juan Nieves: “This is not a (simple) demotion. We want him to understand that this is a process.” quote courtesy of Brian McPherson.