Ben Lively worked seven innings, allowing just five hits while striking out 15, but Y-D fell to Harwich 3-1.
By: Andrew Constant / @andrew_constant
Ben Lively struck out 15 in seven dominant innings, but his efforts weren?t enough, as the Red Sox dropped their fourth straight game, 3-1 to the Harwich Mariners, Friday night at Red Wilson Field.
Former Yarmouth-Dennis infielder Tyler Sciacca terrorized his former team, clubbing his third home run of the summer and second against the Red Sox after being acquired by the Mariners earlier in the month, in the seventh inning to give Harwich a 2-1 lead. Earlier in the contest, Sciacca turned in the defensive play of the day, leaping up to make a beautiful grab of a line drive hit by Wayne Taylor in the third inning.
Sciacca?s efforts backed a superb start by AJ Reed, who went seven innings and allowed just six hits and one run, striking out six. The Red Sox? only rally against Reed came in the fourth, when they tied the game at 1-1. After Tanner Mathis led off the inning with a strikeout, All-Star Carlos Asuaje singled to center to give Y-D their second hit of the ballgame. Fellow All-Star Sam Travis knocked Asuaje with a double to left-center, knotting the game. After Robert Pehl flied out, Zak Blair looked as if he was going to give Y-D the lead, sending a sharp single to left, but Travis was thrown out at the plate by Sam Dove, ending the threat.
The game remained tied until Sciacca?s homer in the seventh, with Lively and Reed matching zeroes for the next two innings. After Sciacca?s blast over the center field wall, Lively struck out the side, ending his night with the 15 punch outs. In all, the right-hander allowed just five hits, two of them solo home runs, and walked only one batter, before giving way to Joey Denato in the eighth inning.
Denato proceeded to register three strikeouts of his own in two innings of work, allowing a run in the top half of the ninth inning. He got the first two outs of the ninth via strikeout, but yielded a single to Austen Smith to give Harwich a base runner. With Dove at the plate, Smith advanced to second on a wild pitch and then scored later in the at-bat when Dove lined a single to right field, pushing the lead to 3-1.
But the Red Sox didn?t go down quietly in the bottom of the ninth, loading the bases with two outs, without recording a hit. Clark Labitan, who replaced Reed on the mound in the eighth, got he first out of the inning before giving way to Vladimir Camacho, who promptly hit Alex Blandino with a pitch. Justin Shafer kept the inning rolling when he reached on an error by shortstop Matt Reida, and Taylor walked, forcing Harwich to make their second pitching change of the inning.
This time, the Mariners brought in Tyler Burgess, who got the biggest out of the ball game, striking out Morgan Mickan on a 2-2 pitch to end the threat and the contest, giving Harwich their third win in five chances against Y-D this summer.
The Red Sox will be well represented in Saturday?s All-Star Game, held at Harwich?s Whitehouse Field. Mathis, Travis, Robert Pehl, Zak Blair and Blandino will all start for the Eastern Division, while Asuaje and reliever Bryan Verbitsky also made the team as reserves. Aaron Blair, the Cape League leader in wins and ERA, will get the start for the East, which looks to win their second straight All-Star Game.
The game will begin at 6 p.m., but the gates open at 2 p.m., as there will be live batting practice for each team, as well as an autograph session before the Home Run Derby starts at 5 p.m.