Author Archive

Lucky 7? We’ll see tonight in Binghamton

The Sea Dogs have won six straight (season-high) and continue their six-game roadtrip on Wednesday night against the Binghamton Mets from NYSEG Stadium. Right-hander Keith Couch (3-0, 2.20) makes his fourth start of the season, but the 19th of his Double-A career, he is 11-1, 2.82 ERA.  Last night was Portland’s fifth postponement this season – they’ll have four doubleheaders in May, but four against Binghamton.

How about Mookie Betts… Has reached base safely in all 15 Double-A starts and 45 straight regular season games dating back to August 22013, but 50 including last year’s Carolina League playoffs…Last 142 games for Betts (start of 2013): .330 (173-for-524), 17 HR, 72 RBI, 113 RS, 43 2B, 5 3B, 88 BB, 64 SO and 45 of 50 in SB.

Betts leads the Eastern League in: Average, On-Base Percentage, runs scored and tied for total bases.

Here’s some nuggets on the team

  • With a win tonight, Portland will have their longest win streak since a 7-gamer last April 27-May 4
  • ‘Dogs have won six straight road games – longest since 2011.
  • Portland’s 12-4 start is their best since going 13-3 in 2008…The team’s best start is 19-3 in 1995 – Billy McMillon was on that team.
  • 12-4 mark is tied for the 2nd best overall record with Las Vegas (Triple-A) and Visalia (High-A)…The Dunedin Blue Jays (High-A) have the best record in minor league baseball at 15-4 (.789).

Highlight of triple play from Monday

Pre-Game begins at 6:15 PM on 95.9/95.5 and the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network…Listen online at seadogs.com or watch at MILB.TV.

Pre-Game Interview: Matt Spring

Portland lineup: Betts 4, Marrero 6, Shaw 3, Welch 5, Swihart 2, Rivero DH, Ramos 9, Hissey 7, Wilkerson 8, Couch RHP (3-0, 2.20)

Binghamton: Ceciliani 8, Reynolds 6, Burgamy 5, Clark 3, Vaughn 9, Lawley 7, Taijeron DH, Carillo 2, Tovar 4, Peavey RHP (0-1, 6.75)

Notes for day…Complete notes at seadogs.com

Matt Spring hit his 80th professional homer on Tuesday night...Congrats Matt (photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor by Sitting Still Photography)

Matt Spring hit his 80th professional homer on Tuesday night…Congrats Matt (photo courtesy of Kelly O’Connor by Sitting Still Photography)

THAT MAKES FIVE: Portland was postponed for the fifth time in 21 days to start the season, and conclude their six-game roadtrip on Thursday night against the Binghamton Mets from NYSEG Stadium…The Sea Dogs have won six straight and 10 of their last 11 – the 12-4 mark is their best start since going 13-3 to begin the 2008 campaign…The ‘Dogs have also won six straight road games for the first time since 2011…RHP Keith Couch (3-0, 2.20) makes his fourth start of the season and the 19th of his Double-A career (11-1, 2.82 in 18 starts).

IT’S SPRING TIME: DH Matt Spring clubbed his first homer of the season, a two-run homer in the 11th inning, lifting the Sea Dogs to a 5-3 win over the B-Mets on Tuesday night…Portland’s bullpen tossed 5.2 scoreless on 4 hits, 3 walks and 9 strikeouts…LHP Robby Scott (2-0) earned the win, fanning three batters on 2 hits over 3 IP…RHP Jon Velasquez (0-2) took the loss, yielding a lead-off single in the 11th to Henry Ramos and the two-run blast by Spring.

 

MOOKIE MADNESS: 2B Mookie Betts went 2-for-4 (two walks) on Tuesday and has reached base safely in all 15 Double-A starts and 45 straight regular season games dating back to August 2, 2013, but 50 including last year’s Carolina League playoffs…Last 142 games for Betts (start of 2013): .330 (173-for-524), 17 HR, 72 RBI, 113 RS, 43 2B, 5 3B, 88 BB, 64 SO and 45 of 50 in SB…C Blake Swihart has reached base safely in his first 13 starts in Double-A…OF Shannon Wilkerson has reached base safely in his last 14 games.

GOT OFF TO A GOOD START: RHP Mike McCarthy made his third start of the season on Tuesday night, working 5.1 innings on seven hits and three runs…McCarthy left the game after 1B Jayce Boyd’s run-scoring single to tie the game…SS Deven Marrero gave Portland a 3-1 lead with a two-run single in the fifth.

WELCOME BACK: RHP Aaron Kurcz was activated from the disabled on Monday, and pitched a scoreless eighth inning in game two of the series…The righty fanned the side and allowed one hit…Kurcz missed all of last season due to Tommy John surgery, and had not pitched since July 21, 2012 at New Hampshire.

 THREE WAS THE MAGIC NUMBER: Kurcz, McCarthy, RHP Michael Olmsted and Scott each fanned three in Tuesday’s game…Olmsted worked 1.2 innings on one hit, one walk and retired the final two batters in the sixth inning with two runners on base.

Sea Dogs look for their sixth straight win

Coyle to Betts to Shaw...Portland turns the first triple play in franchise history.

Coyle to Betts to Shaw…Portland turns the first triple play in franchise history.

The Sea Dogs made history last night, turning their first triple play in franchise history, and taking game one of the series 7-4 over the B-Mets. Portland has won five straight and nine of their last 10.

Sean Coyle started the triple play on a high bouncer hit by Brian Burgamy with runners at first and second. Coyle’s throw was low, but picked by Mookie Betts, who got Burgamy at first base.

Highlight of triple play

Pre-Game begins at 6:15 PM on 95.9/95.5 and the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network…Listen online at seadogs.com or watch at MILB.TV.

Pre-Game Interview: Travis Shaw

Portland lineup: Betts 4, Marrero 6, Shaw 3, Rivero 5, Swihart 2, Ramos 9, Spring DH, Hissey 7, Wilkerson 8, McCarthy RHP

Binghamton: Ceciliani 8, Reynolds 6, Burgamy 4, Clark DH, Plawecki 2, Boyd 3, Lawley 5, Vaughn 9, Johnson 7, Robles RHP

Notes for day…Complete notes at seadogs.com

WHAT A START: With last night’s victory, the Sea Dogs won their fifth straight (season-high) and improved to 4-0 on the trip…Portland made history last night, turning the first triple play in franchise history…The historic feat ended the first inning on Brian Burgamy’s ground ball to Coyle, who started the 5-4-3 triple play…The Sea Dogs have won nine of their last 10 games, scoring at least six runs in those nine wins…Portland’s 11-4 start is their best since going 12-3 to begin 2008.

 HIGH-FIVE CITY: The ‘Dogs won their fifth straight game with last night’s 7-4 win over the Mets in the series opener at NYSEG Stadium…LHP Henry Owens (3-0) worked six innings on four hits, three runs (two earned), four walks and three strikeouts, earning the win…1B Travis Shaw and RF Shannon Wilkerson each homered…Portland received a hit from eight of nine starters, including multi-hit games from 2B Mookie Betts, Shaw and C Blake Swihart…RHP Miguel Celestino tossed a perfect ninth for his first save of the year.

VIDEO GAME NUMBERS: Betts hasreached base safely in all 14 Double-A starts and has reached base safely in 44 straight regular season games dating back to August 2, 2013, but 49 including last year’s Carolina League playoffs…C Blake Swihart has reached base safely in his first 12 starts in Double-A…Wilkerson has reached base safely in 13 straight starts.CAME UP BIG LATE: There were nine combined runs scored during innings 6-7 in the series opener…Portland led 5-0 after 5 ½ innings, scoring three in the sixth on run-scoring doubles by DH Stefan Welch and Swihart…CF Henry Ramos added an RBI single…Binghamton scored all their runs off Owens in the sixth…Burgamy nailed an RBI double off the left-field wall and DH Jayce Boyd drove home two with a double.

HISSEY CAN DRIVE: OF Peter Hissey extended his hitting streak to four games by going 1-for-4 last night…Hissey drove in the first run of the game with an RBI groundout in the second inning off losing pitcher RHP Brett Pill (0-3)…The West Chester, PA native has an RBI in four of six games.

WELCOME BACK: RHP Aaron Kurcz was activated from the disabled yesterday…Kurcz missed all of last season due to Tommy John surgery, and hasn’t pitched since July 21, 2012 with Portland at New Hampshire.

Monday night in Binghamton

The doorway to the B-Mets front office.

The doorway to the B-Mets front office.

The Sea Dogs open up a four-game series on Monday night against the Binghamton Mets from NYSEG Stadium…LHP Henry Owens makes his fourths start of the season

Pre-Game begins at 6:15 PM on 95.9/95.5 and the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network…Listen online at seadogs.com or watch at MILB.TV.

Pre-Game Interview: Peter Hissey

Portland lineup: Betts 4, Wilkerson 9, Shaw 3, Welch DH, Swihart 2, Coyle 5, Ramos 8, Hissey 7, Gibson 6, Owens LHP

Binghamton: Johnson 7, Reynolds 4, Burgamy 3, Plawecki 2, Boyd DH, Ceciliani 8, Lawley 5, Taijeron 9, Tovar 6, Pill RHP

Notes for day…Complete notes at seadogs.com

BACK AT IT ON MONDAY: Easter Sunday was a league wide off day – the Sea Dogs resume their seven-game roadtrip on Monday night against the Binghamton Mets from NYSEG Stadium…Portland began the first part of their trip by sweeping the New Britain Rock Cats in a three-game series over two days…Portland and Binghamton managed just one game last Monday at Hadlock Field, the ‘Dogs won 9-4…LHP Henry Owens makes his 10th Double-A start and his second straight against Binghamton.

COMPLETEING THE SWEEP: RHP Mike Augliera (2-1) tossed six scoreless and 2B Mookie Betts went 4-for-5 (second homer), leading the Sea Dogs to a 6-1 win over the Rock Cats on Saturday night at New Britain Stadium…Augliera gave up just three hits on two walks and fanned two…Betts scored three times and blasted his second homer of the season to lead-off the ninth inning…CF Shannon Wilkerson finished 2-for-5 with an RBI double in the first…1B Travis Shaw, RF Henry Ramos and 1B Stefan Welch each had RBIs in the win.

VIDEO GAME NUMBERS: Betts hasreached base safely in all 13 Double-A starts and has reached base safely in 43 straight regular season games dating back to August 2, 2013, but 48 including last year’s Carolina League playoffs…C Blake Swihart has reached base safely in his first 11 starts in Double-A…On Saturday, eight of nine starters had at least one hit.

NICE WORK AGAIN BY THE ‘PEN: RHP Matty Ott (turned 24 yesterday) and LHP Robby Scott closed out Saturday’s win with scoreless appearance…Scott has not allowed a run in his first 4 Double-A outings…The lefty retired 19 straight batters from April 6-14, earning his first Double-A win on April 14th vs. Binghamton.

WELCOME BACK: RHP Aaron Kurcz was activated from the disabled list earlier today…Kurcz missed all of last season due to Tommy John surgery, and hasn’t pitched since July 21, 2012 with Portland at New Hampshire…The right-hander was received from the Chicago Cubs as the player to be named later in the Theo Epstein compensation (March 14, 2012).

 3-for-3: INF Derrik Gibson, OF Peter Hissey and Ramos all have three-game hitting streaks…Gibson has hit safely in four of six starts and went 3-for-3 with a double on April 13th vs. New Britain…Hissey has an RBI in 3 of 5 starts, since joining the Sea Dogs from Triple-A Pawtucket.

Sea Dogs look for the series sweep in New Britain

View of the Sea Dogs dugout.

View of the Sea Dogs dugout.

The Sea Dogs and the Rock Cats conclude a three-game series in two days on Saturday night at New Britain Stadium…Portland swept a twinbill from the ‘Cats on Friday night. Tomorrow is a league wide off day for Easter Sunday – the ‘Dogs resume the second part of their roadtrip on Monday night in Binghamton.

Pre-Game begins at 6:15 PM on 95.9/95.5 and the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network…Listen online at seadogs.com or watch at MILB.TV.

Pre-Game Interview: Mickey Pena

Portland lineup: Betts 4, Wilkerson 8, Shaw 5, Welch 3 Swihart 2, Coyle DH, Ramos 9, Hissey 7, Gibson 6, Augliera RHP

New Britain: Ortiz 9, Hanson 4, Rodriguez DH, Vargas 3, Koch 2, Kvasnicka 8, Waring 5, Mejia 6, Thomas 7, Gilmartin LHP

Notes for day…Complete notes at seadogs.com

LAY OFF DIDN’T MATTER: The Sea Dogs resumed action last night after three straight postponements, and swept the New Britain Rock Cats in a doubleheader, 6-4 and 6-0…Tonight is the series finale, with the entire Eastern League off tomorrow for Easter Sunday…RHP Mike Augliera earned his first Double-A win last Saturday at Hadlock Field, tossing seven strong innings against the ‘Cats…LHP Sean Gilmartin beat Portland last Sunday, yielding two runs (one earned) over 6 IP.

CLEAN SWEEP: 1B Travis Shaw went 4-for-4 with a season-best 4 RBI, leading the Sea Dogs to a 6-4 win in the twinbill opener…Shaw nailed a two-run single in the third and a two-run homer in the fifth…LF Carlos Rivero belted a two-run homer in game one…In the nightcap, LHP Mickey Pena fanned a career-high 11 batters over 4.2 IP and DH Blake Swihart crushed a three-run homer in a 6-0 win…Portland’s staff fanned 16 batters in game two, their most since last April 5th against Trenton when they fanned 17.

3-for-3: RHP Keith Couch has won all three starts this season, working five innings in the opener…Couch gave up season highs in hits (8) and runs (4), but did not issue a walk and fanned five…The Elmont, NY native is 11-1, 2.82 (34 ER/108.1 IP) in his Double-A career as a starter…Pena’s 11 strikeouts were the most since RHP Anthony Ranaudo tied a team record with 13 punch-outs last June 13 vs. Erie.

FLAWLESS RELIEF: RHP Miguel Celestino, RHP Michael Olmsted and RHP Noe Ramirez combined to pitch 4.1 scoreless frames in the doubleheader…Olmsted earned the win in game two, working 1.1 innings on one hit…Ramirez pitched two scoreless in the opener for his first save and Celestino fanned the side in the nightcap to end the game.

VIDEO GAME NUMBERS: 2B Mookie Betts reached base in both games last night and has reached safely in all 12 starts in Double-A…Betts has reached base safely in 42 straight regular season games dating back to August 2, 2013, but 47 including last year’s Carolina League playoffs…Swihart has reached base safely in all 10 starts in Double-A.

ENDED BUT A GOOD NIGHT: OF Shannon Wilkerson had his nine-game hitting streak snapped in game one, but walked twice and scored a run…In game two, Wilkerson laced a run-scoring single with one-out in the third inning off losing pitcher LHP Taylor Rogers (0-3)…LF Peter Hissey went 2-for-3 in game two with an RBI double.

Sea Dogs strike in New Britain, sweep Rock Cats 6-4 and 6-0

NEW BRITAIN, Conn. – The Portland Sea Dogs (9-4) improved to 5-1 against the New Britain Cats (4-9), sweeping Friday night’s doubleheader 6-4 and 6-0 at New Britain Stadium. Portland clubbed out 22 hits in the twinbill, receiving a career-high 11 strikeouts by Mickey Pena in the nightcap.

Game 1 Box Score      Game 2 Box Score

GAME ONE RECAP The Portland Sea Dogs didn’t seem fazed by Mother Nature’s doom, which produced three postponements in a row, and downed the New Britain Rock Cats 6-4, in game one of a doubleheader Friday night at New Britain Stadium. The win marked the second in a row for the ‘Dogs and fourth in five games against the ‘Cats.

Portland’s bats came out swinging against New Britain’s D.J. Baxendale and broke through for four runs in the third inning. Shannon Wilkerson walked and Mookie Betts followed with a single to left that kick started the rally. Two batters later, Travis Shaw brought home the pair of speedsters with a single to center, and Portland had the 2-0 lead.

Carlos Rivero was next to step into the batter’s box and faced Baxendale (0-2) for the fourth time on the young season. The leftfielder took a hanging breaking ball over the wall in left for a two-run shot that doubled Portland’s lead to 4-0. Rivero improved to 4-for-5 with four RBI against Baxendale as he collected three hits against him in the April 10th affair.

New Britain didn’t wait long to respond against Keith Couch and plated a run of its own in the bottom half of the frame. With two down, Matt Koch singled and was backed up by a run scoring double by Corey Wimberly, which cut the deficit to 4-1.

Couch (3-0) danced his way out of trouble in the fourth and struck out back-to-back hitters looking, with two on, to end a threat and keep the lead at three. Shaw rewarded his starter with two more insurance runs on a two run homer crushed to center in the top of the fifth that made the lead 6-1.

New Britain continued to climb out of the hole and responded with three more of its own in the bottom of the fifth. Back-to-back hits, a single and double began the inning and with one out it was Mike Kvasnicka that drove home the pair with a double to center. Nate Hanson followed with a bloop single that brought home the third run of the inning and made it 6-4.

Couch gave up his first earned runs of the season, but finished five innings and allowed the four runs on eight hits; he did not walk a batter and struck out five.

Noe Ramirez took over for the starter and closed the game out with two scoreless innings and earned his first save of the season.

Baxendale went the first five for New Britain and gave up the six runs, all earned, on nine hits; he walked one and struck out two. Former big leaguer Matt Guerrier was the first out of the pen and silenced the Sea Dogs over the final two frames.

GAME TWO RECAP

Mickey Pena didn’t earn the win in game two, but the lefty fanned a career-high 11 batters over 4.2 innings, as the Sea Dogs completed the doubleheader sweep with a 6-0 win over the Rock Cats. Portland pitchers combined for 16 strikeouts, the most since they had 17 last April 5th vs. Trenton.

Pena left due to pitch count, yielding only two hits, one walk, and induced 22 swings-and-misses. The Texas native threw 56 of 93 pitches for strikes – in just his sixth Double-A start.

Blake Swihart (2-for-4) put the icing on the cake, cracking his first Double-A homer, a three-run shot off Ryan O’Rourke during a four-run fifth. Stefan Welch knocked losing pitcher Taylor Rogers out of the game, delivering a one-out RBI single. Rogers (0-3) suffered his second loss in a week to Portland, giving up six hits and four runs over 4.1 IP.

Michael Olmsted (1-0) relieved Pena in the fifth inning and earned his first win of the season. Olmsted pitched 1.1 innings, giving one hit and a walk. The Rock Cats had only three hits in the contest.

Miguel Celestino fanned the side in the seventh inning, finishing off the 16-strikeout performance.

Portland jumped on Rogers in the third inning, scoring two runs off the Twins #19 Prospect. Derrik Gibson led off the frame with a single and scored on Peter Hissey’s (2-for-3) double. With one out, Shannon Wilkerson nailed a 1-2 pitch to left-center field for a run-scoring single.

The entire lineup for the Rock Cats fanned at least once, with three players (Aderling Mejia, Reynaldo Rodriguez and Brandon Waring) striking out three times. Portland’s last two doubleheader sweeps on the road are both in New Britain Stadium. The last on July 22, 2013.

The Sea Dogs and Rock Cats get set to wrap up the three-game, two-day series with the finale, Saturday at 6:35 pm from New Britain Stadium. The ‘Dogs will send righty Mike Augliera (1-1, 5.54) to the hill for his third start. The New Britain Rock Cats will send RHP Sean Gilmartin (1-1, 3.27) to the mound. Radio coverage begins at 6:15 PM on the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network and http://www.seadogs.com. Coverage on MiLB.TV kicks-off at 6:25 PM.

Yes! We have baseball in New Britain

Rock Cats GameDay Program...really cool.

Rock Cats GameDay Program…really cool.

The Sea Dogs and the Rock Cats have been postponed the last three days, and up a three-game series in two days on Friday night at New Britain Stadium. Last night’s series opener was postponed due to unplayable field conditions. RHP Keith Couch and LHP Mickey Pena make the starts for the ‘Dogs. New Britain counters with RHP D.J. Baxendale and LHP Taylor Rogers.  Tomorrow night, the ‘Dogs and ‘Cats play game three of the series – the entire Eastern League is off for Easter Sunday.

Portland’s second leg of the trip opens up on Monday night in Binghamton.  The Sea Dogs and Rock Cats have not played since Monday.

Good luck to the Boston Bruins tonight as they begin their playoff series against the Detroit Red Wings…This team has a lot of hockey fans, nice to see. A few years ago, I felt like one of the only hockey fans on the team.

Really nice chatting with former Sea Dog Tony Thomas before yesterday’s game…Tony is a terrific person and when he signed with the Twins, I was very happy. In my position, I’m a huge Sea Dogs and Red Sox fan, but I’m a fan of players and the guys I meet. I want them all to succeed whether that be in baseball or something else.

 

  • Sporting News reveals the Sea Dogs Twitter account @PortlandSeaDogs has the most followers in Double-A…Full Story
  • RHP Jose Valdez was promoted to Triple-A Pawtucket earlier today…Valdez converted both save attempts, and was scoreless in three outings.
  • Boston Red Sox President/CEO Larry Lucchino has been named the 2014 Sports Lawyers Association award of Excellence winner.
  • Former Cats with Sea Dogs ties: Reynaldo Rodriguez, Tony Thomas and Daniel Turpen. Manager Jeff Smith played for Portland in 2003.

Owens and Betts sweep Eastern League Players of the Week

Dunkin’ Dugout Program Returns to Hadlock Field

(AUDIO) My conversation this week with Billy McMillon

Pre-Game begins at 5:15 PM on 95.9/95.5 and the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network…Listen online at seadogs.com or watch at MILB.TV.

Pre-Game Interview: Tony Thomas (Former Sea Dog and Current Rock Cat)

Game 1
Portland lineup: Betts 4, Marrero 6, Shaw 3, Rivero 7, Welch DH Swihart 2, Coyle 5, Ramos 9, Wilkerson 8, Couch RHP

New Britain: Wimberly 6, Kvasnicka 8, Hanson DH, Vargas 3, Rodriguez 7, Ortiz 9, Waring 5, Boyer 4, Koch 2, Baxendale RHP

Notes for day…Complete notes at seadogs.com

THIS IS GETTING OLD: The Sea Dogs and Rock Cats have not played since Monday and open up a three-game series in two days on Friday night at New Britain Stadium…Last night’s series opener was postponed due to unplayable conditions…Portland had the final two games of their opening homestand postponed…New Britain did not play the final two games of their opening roadtrip in New Hampshire…Tonight opens up a seven-game trip for the ‘Dogs in seven days.

LAST GAME: The Sea Dogs used a six-run sixth for the second time this season, defeating the B-Mets 9-4 on Monday night…3B Sean Coyle went 3-for-4 with a homer, 3 RBI and three runs scored…1B Stefan Welch delivered a two-run single in the sixth, giving the Sea Dogs the lead for good…LHP Robby Scott pitched 2.1 scoreless on just one hit to earn his first Double-A win…2B Mookie Betts (2-for-5), RF Peter Hissey and C Blake Swihart each had RBI’s for Portland.

GREAT SCOTT: Scott had retired 19 straight batters until Matt Clark’s single in the eighth inning…LHP Henry Owens took a no-decision, yielding two, 2-run homers with two-outs in the third inning…Owens allowed a Double-A high four runs on six hits, three walks and four strikeouts…3B Brian Burgamy and Clark each smacked their fourth homers…RHP Miguel Celestino closed out the win with 1.2 scoreless.

WAY TO GO MATE: Welch has reached base safely in 11 of his last 18 plate appearances and safely in his last nine starts…The Australian native knocked in a team-high 5 runs on Friday night against New Britain.

VIDEO GAME NUMBERS: Betts is leading the Eastern League with a .450 average (18-for-40) and has reached base safely in all 10 starts…Dating back to last season, Betts has reached base safely in 40 straight regular season games, but 45 including last year’s Carolina League playoffs…Swihart has reached safely in all eight starts and Shannon Wilkerson is riding a team-high nine-game hitting streak.

HAPPENED LAST WEEK: Yesterday was the fourth postponement for Portland and New Britain…Portland’s rainout on April 8th in Trenton will be made up as part of a day/night doubleheader on May 31st…Game one starts at 2:05 and the nightcap begins at 7:05 PM…The ‘Dogs have twinbills with Binghamton on May 19th and 21st.

View of New Britain Stadium from behind the plate.

View of New Britain Stadium from behind the plate.

 

Finally we have baseball…Couch on the hill

The Sea Dogs and the Rock Cats were both postponed the last two games, and open up a three-game series on Thursday night at New Britain Stadium…Portland took three of four from the ‘Cats last week at Hadlock Field and finished their first homestand of the season 4-1. Technically, the one win against Binghamton goes into the books as a series sweep.  Portland and the B-Met will now play six games in four days from May 19-21.

  • Sporting News reveals the Sea Dogs Twitter account @PortlandSeaDogs has the most followers in Double-A…Full Story
  • Travis Shaw was excited to play on his 24th birthday yesterday, but the game was postponed…Shaw has still never played a game on his birthday. Hopefully next year!
  • Boston Red Sox President/CEO Larry Lucchino has been named the 2014 Sports Lawyers Association award of Excellence winner.
  • Former Cats with Sea Dogs ties: Reynaldo Rodriguez, Tony Thomas and Daniel Turpen. Manager Jeff Smith played for Portland in 2003.

Owens and Betts sweep Eastern League Players of the Week

Dunkin’ Dugout Program Returns to Hadlock Field

 

(AUDIO) My conversation this week with Billy McMillon

Pre-Game begins at 6:15 PM on 95.9/95.5 and the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network…Listen online at seadogs.com or watch at MILB.TV.

Pre-Game Interview: 

Portland lineup: Betts 4, Marrero 6, Shaw 3, Rivero 7, Welch DH Swihart 2, Coyle 5, Ramos 9, Wilkerson 8, Couch RHP

New Britain: Wimberly 6, Kvasnicka 8, Hanson DH, Vargas 3, Rodriguez 7, Ortiz 9, Waring 5, Koch 2, Thomas 4, Baxendale RHP

Notes for day…Complete notes at seadogs.com

Travis Shaw has never played on his birthday...Today he gets the chance! Happy 24th Travis

Travis Shaw has never played on his birthday…Yesterday was his chance, but mother nature said no.

WE FINALLY HAVE BASEBALL: The Sea Dogs and Rock Cats were postponed the last two games, and open up a three-game series on Thursday night at New Britain Stadium…Portland finished 4-1 on their first homestand of the season and gets credited for a one-game series sweep over the Mets…New Britain dropped four of five on their first roadtrip of the season…The entire Eastern League is off for Easter Sunday – Portland begins a four-game set on Monday night in Binghamton.

ONE DID THE TRICK: The Sea Dogs used a six-run sixth for the second time this season, defeating the B-Mets 9-4 on Monday night…3B Sean Coyle went 3-for-4 with a homer, 3 RBI and three runs scored…1B Stefan Welch delivered a two-run single in the sixth, giving the Sea Dogs the lead for good…LHP Robby Scott pitched 2.1 scoreless on just one hit to earn his first Double-A win…2B Mookie Betts (2-for-5), RF Peter Hissey and C Blake Swihart each had RBI’s for Portland.

GREAT SCOTT: Scott had retired 19 straight batters until Matt Clark’s single in the eighth inning…LHP Henry Owens took a no-decision, yielding two, 2-run homers with two-outs in the third inning…Owens allowed a Double-A high four runs on six hits, three walks and four strikeouts…3B Brian Burgamy and Clark each smacked their fourth homers…RHP Miguel Celestino closed out the win with 1.2 scoreless.

WAY TO GO MATE: Welch has reached base safely in 11 of his last 18 plate appearances and safely in his last nine starts…The Australian native knocked in a team-high 5 runs on Friday night against New Britain.

VIDEO GAME NUMBERS: Betts is leading the Eastern League with a .450 average (18-for-40) and has reached base safely in all 10 starts…Dating back to last season, Betts has reached base safely in 40 straight regular season games, but 45 including last year’s Carolina League playoffs…Swihart has reached safely in all eight starts and Shannon Wilkerson is riding a team-high nine-game hitting streak.

Derrik Gibson made a highlight reel catch at SS during the recent homestand.

Derrik Gibson made a highlight reel catch at SS during the recent homestand.

Sea Dogs make up dates…April 15th, we’ll never forget

The Sea Dogs have now been postponed twice this season and have doubleheaders on the following dates: May 21st vs. Binghamton (5:00 PM) and May 31st at Trenton (Day/Night Doubleheader).

April 15th is a day we’ll never forget, and comes with conflicting emotions. The first part of the memory is the amazing breakthrough by Jackie Robinson. The entire Portland roster was scheduled to wear #42 tonight, but mother nature prevented that. I can’t wait to see those uniforms next season.

images

Today also marked the one-year anniversary of the tragic event at the Boston Marathon. I can remember being in Binghamton when everything started to happen. I was getting on the bus for the trip to the park, but when I looked at Twitter on my phone, I saw the news. It was paralyzing. Those emotions from 2001 kind of crept back.  Then after everything that happens, all I could think about is the families. But, the City of Boston rallied, and deserve the name Boston Strong. The Red Sox players were amazing in their efforts to fight back.

Portland returns to action on Wednesday night in the final game of the series against Binghamton. With tonight’s rainout, the ‘Dogs will not lose a series for the fourth straight time to start the season.

Owens on the hill against Binghamton

Billy McMillon is in his first year as Portland Manager...He joins the Pre-Game Show tonight at 5:40

Billy McMillon is in his first year as Portland Manager…He joins the Pre-Game Show tonight at 5:40

The Sea Dogs open up a three-game series on Monday night against the Binghamton Mets at Hadlock Field…LHP Henry Owens makes his third start of the season and his first at home this season.

Owens and Betts sweep Eastern League Players of the Week

Pre-Game begins at 5:40 PM on 95.9/95.5 and the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network…Listen online at seadogs.com or watch at MILB.TV.

Pre-Game Interview: Billy McMillon

Binghamton: Johnson 8, Burgamy 5, Plawecki 2, Clark 3, Boyd DH, Lawley 7, Vaughan 9, Reynolds 6, Tovar 4, Peavey RHP

Portland lineup: Betts 4, Marrero 6, Shaw DH, Rivero 7, Welch 3 Swihart 2, Coyle 5, Ramos 8, Hissey 9, McCarthy RHP

HENRY FACES THE METS: The Sea Dogs took three of four from the New Britain Rock Cats to start the homestand, and open up a three-game set with the Binghamton Mets on Monday night…Tonight marks the first of 21 meetings between the two teams – last year Binghamton took 13 of 20…LHP Henry Owens, the top pitching prospect in the Red Sox system, makes his third start of the season, but his first at Hadlock Field…Owens is 2-0 and has not allowed a run in 12.2 IP on six hits and 18 strikeouts.

THEY GOT WON: New Britain avoided a four-game sweep of the Sea Dogs with a 6-3 win on Sunday afternoon…LHP Sean Gilmartin (1-1) worked six strong innings on four hits, two runs (one earned) and fanned three…SS Derik Gibson led Portland’s offense, going 3-for-3 with a double and two runs scored…3B Nate Hanson and RF Daniel Ortiz each went 3-for-5 to lead New Britain’s 12-hit attack…2B Mookie Betts and RF Shannon Wilkerson drove in runs for Portland.

CREDIT THEY DESERVE: Betts and Owens were named the Eastern League’s first player/pitcher of the Week (April 3-13)…RHP Keith Couch, Owens and Binghamton’s RHP Hansel Robles have not allowed an earned run among Eastern League qualifiers…Betts is leading the Eastern League in average (.457), on-base percentage (.512) and tied for total bases with 26…Owens leads the lead in strikeouts and has the lone complete-game shutout in the league this season.

WAY TO GO MATE: Stefan Welch has reached base safely in nine of his last 14 plate appearances and safely in his last eight starts…Welch knocked in a team-high 5 runs on Friday night against New Britain.

STAYING HOT AT THE PLATE: Wilkersonhas a team-high, nine-game hitting streak, after going hitless on Opening Night…Last season, Wilkerson’s longest hitting streak was eight games from May 24-31…LF Carlos Rivero had a multi-hit game in the first 3 games of the homestand, but went 0-for-3 with a walk on Sunday.

Future catchers and present

Future catchers and present

KEPT THEM IN IT: RHP Mike McCarthy (0-2) suffered the loss on Sunday, but gave up just three runs on five hits over five innings pitched…LHP Nate Reed yielded a run for the third straight outing, giving up six hits, three runs, two walks and four strikeouts over 2 IP…RHP Noe Ramirez worked two scoreless frames.

 

High Five with a win today for Portland

Sea Dogs held their Little League Coaches Clinic before today's game

Sea Dogs held their Little League Coaches Clinic before today’s game

The Sea Dogs wrap up their four-game series on Sunday afternoon at Hadlock Field against the New Britain Rock Cats (Twins affiliate)…With a win today, the ‘Dogs will earn their first 4-game sweep at home since 2010.

Pre-Game begins at 12:40 PM on 95.9/95.5 and the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network…Listen online at seadogs.com or watch at MILB.TV.

Pre-Game Interview: Jeff Dooley (Voice of the Rock Cats)

New Britain: Wimberly 8, Boyer 4, Hanson 5, Vargas 3, Ortiz 9, Thomas 7, Rodriguez DH, Mejia 6, Knudson 2, Gilmartin LHP

Portland lineup: Betts 4, Wilkerson 9, Shaw 3, Rivero 7, Ramos 8, Welch 5, Coyle DH, Spring 2, Gibson 6, McCarthy RHP

WHAT A START: The Sea Dogs have won four straight and seek a four-game sweep of the New Britain Rock Cats (Twins affiliate) on Sunday afternoon at Hadlock Field…Portland has not swept a four-game series at home since September 3-6, 2010 vs. the New Hampshire Fisher Cats…Portland is averaging 9.0 runs-per-game in the series, hitting .355 (38-for-107), including .432 (16-for-37) with runners-in-scoring position…The ‘Dogs have their best 9-game start to the season since they were 6-3 in 2008.

THAT’S RUN SUPPORT: Portland scored six times in the sixth inning, erasing an early 4-1 deficit to beat the Rock Cats 10-4 on Saturday afternoon…DH Stefan Welch reached base five times, going 3-for-3 with a walk and a hit-by-pitch…LF Carlos Rivero finished 2-for-5 with 3 RBI…1B Mike Brenly had the game-winning hit, delivering a two-run single in the sixth, as the ‘Dogs sent 11 men to the plate…RHP Mike Augliera (1-1) earned his first Double-A win, working seven innings on eight hits and four runs.

ALL NINE HAD FUN: The entire lineup had at least one hit on Saturday…Mookie Betts, Rivero,Welch and Shannon Wilkerson each had multi-hit games…Betts picked up his first multi-RBI game in Portland and has now reached base safely in 43 straight games, dating back to last August with High-A Salem…He reached in his final 35 games of 2013, including the Carolina League playoffs.

WAY TO GO MATE: Welch has reached base safely in eight of his last 11 plate appearances, and is hitting .409 (9-for-22) with a team-leading 7 RBI, including five in the series opener – a Double-A career high…The Red Sox acquired Welch in a trade from the Pirates last season in exchange for cash considerations.

View of the U.S. Pavilion at Hadlock Field.

View of the U.S. Pavilion at Hadlock Field.

STAYING HOT AT THE PLATE: Wilkersonhas a team-high, eight-game hitting streak, after going hitless on Opening Night…Rivero went 1-for-12 (.083) on the roadtrip, but has three straight multi-hit games, going 7-for-13 (.538) in the series…SS Deven Marrero has hit safely in all seven starts, hitting .355 (11-for-31) with 5 RBI and 5 doubles.

FOUR BY FOUR: Augliera has given up all eight runs during two 4-run innings over his first 2 Double-A starts…The former Sanford Mainer was scoreless in his final 4.2 innings on Saturday, giving up just two hits…Yesterday’s starters combined to throw 127 strikeouts out of 168 pitches (76%).

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