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Red Wings roll over Pawtucket 8-1
The Red Wings collected 13 hits, drew six walks and took advantage of a pair of Paw Sox errors as Rochester jumped out to an early lead and never looked back in an 8-1 romp over Pawtucket Thursday afternoon from McCoy Stadium.
With the victory, the Wings guaranteed themselves at least a split of the four-game series and a split of their eight-game road trip. The Wings (11-9) have also won 11 games in the month of April now for the first time since 2008 (13-14).
A win on Friday in the series finale would give the Red Wings the series victory over Pawtucket after the Red Sox took three of four from the Wings at Frontier Field last week.
The Wings got out to a fast start off Pawtucket starter Anthony Ranaudo, but it could have been faster. Although the Wings had a 3-0 lead through three innings, they left six runners on base and at least one in scoring position in each of the first three frames.
But the Wings would make the Paw Sox pay for a leadoff walk and a defensive miscue in the fourth inning putting a four-spot on Pawtucket. Eric Farris delivered the dagger, lacing a two-out, two-run triple down the right field line that put the Wings in front 7-0 after four innings.
The first two hitters in Gene Glynn’s lineup set the table for Rochester as Danny Santana and Doug Bernier went a combined 4-for-6 with a double, four walks and five runs scored.
Wilkin Ramirez, batting clean-up Thursday, had a pair of run scoring singles over the first four innings.
The Wings did most of their damage off Ranaudo (3 R, 2 ER in 3.0 IP) who went just three innings and suffered the loss, and reliever Jeremy Kehrt (4 R, 2 ER in 4.0 IP).
Through four innings, the Wings first eight hitters in the lineup all had three plate appearances. It could have been worse for the Paw Sox as Rochester was just 4-for-14 with RISP and left 10 men on base.
But the eight runs of support was plenty for starter Kris Johnson who worked six innings allowing just one unearned on three hits. The former Paw Sox lefty walked four and struck out six against his former team to win his second game of the season.
Johnson’s start Thursday completed a great trip through the Wings rotation where Red Wings starters went a combined 3-0 with a 1.21 ERA (4 ER/29.2 IP) over the last five games.
Matt Hoffman tossed three perfect innings behind Johnson to earn just his fifth career save and first since the 2010 season with Single-A Lakeland. Hoffman struck out four as he and Johnson combined to strikeout 10 Paw Sox hitters on the afternoon. As a team, the Wings have 37 strikeouts over the first three games of this series.
Though he didn’t figure in much of the offense, Chris Parmelee did extend his hit streak to a Red Wings season-high nine games with a single in the fifth inning. He finished the game 1-for-4 with a walk and is now batting .485 (16-for-33) over the streak.
Right-hander Trevor May, fresh off the best outing of his short Triple-A career on Sunday in Syracuse, will get the nod for Rochester Friday night opposite Red Sox prospect RHP Matt Barnes, who will be making his first start of the season.
WINGS THINGS: OF Eric Farris extended his hit streak to seven games with a single in the third inning. He finished the day 2-for-5 and is now batting .414 (12-for-29) over his streak. He has multiple hits in five of his last seven games and a team-high nine this season…INF Doug Bernier has now picked up a hit in all 11 of his starts this season as he is batting .390 (16-for-41) on the year…Will Middlebrooks made a second consecutive rehab start for Pawtucket and went 0-for-4…He and Shane Victorino have combined to play three games in this series and Wings pitchers have held them hitless 11 at-bats.