Mason Katz hit two home runs, solo shots in the second and third innings, and the Red Sox beat Harwich 12-7.
By: Andrew Constant / @andrew_constant
The Red Sox used a five-run third and a six-run fifth to overpower the first-place Harwich Mariners 12-7 Saturday night at Red Wilson Field. Mason Katz hit two solo home runs and Carlos Asuaje crushed a grand slam in the third inning to propel the Yarmouth-Dennis attack, which pounded out 13 hits to win their third straight game.
Harwich jumped on top in the blink of an eye, after Jacoby Jones tripled to begin the game. Phil Ervin grounded out to first just two pitches later, but with the infield back, Jones scored and the Mariners had an early lead. That advantage would stand until the second inning, when Katz crushed his first home run of the game. Katz teed off on Eddie Campbell?s first pitch of the second inning, sending it high over the center field wall, tying the score.
The game remained tied until the bottom of the third, when the Red Sox blew it open. Justin Shafer singled to lead off the frame and University of Florida teammate Josh Tobias followed with a single of his own, putting runners on first and second with nobody out. The two Florida Gators executed a double-steal with Tanner Mathis on the plate, before Mathis reached on a weakly-hit ball to the mound. Asuaje came up with the bases loaded and didn?t miss his opportunity, smacking a grand slam over the right-field wall, giving Y-D a 5-1 lead. After a pitching change and a ground out, Katz hammered his second homer of the game and third of the summer to left, upping the lead to 6-1.
Red Sox starter Andrew Thurman struggled in the fourth inning, allowing four runs in the frame. Former Y-D infielder Tyler Sciacca hit a two-run home run to center field, cutting the Red Sox lead in half. Harwich tacked on two more runs later in the inning, closing the gap to 6-5. In the fifth, Sciacca struck again, tying the game with a sacrifice fly to center.
But the Red Sox got the lead again in the bottom of the fifth, erasing any hope that Harwich had of winning this game. Clark Labitan didn?t get an out, giving way to Cole Pitts out of the Mariners? bullpen. Katz greeted Pitts with an RBI single to left, scoring Asuaje from second. Zak Blair struck out swinging before Robert Pehl stepped to the plate. Pehl, who came in with a .393 batting average, looped a single to right, scoring Sam Travis and Katz and pushing the lead to 9-6. Harwich went back to the bullpen after Sean McHugh singled to left-center, this time calling on Vladimir Camacho. With Justin Shafer at the plate, Pehl scored on a wild pitch by Camacho, but that at-bat wasn?t over. Shafer hit his second home run of the season, crushing into the field hockey scoreboard beyond the left field wall, stretching the Y-D lead to 12-6.
Only Mike Connolly?s solo home run in the top of the sixth changed the scoring any further, as the Red Sox beat Harwich for the first time this summer.
Thurman made it through 5.1 innings, giving up eight hits and seven runs, although only five were earned. He walked three and struck out five, as his ERA ballooned to 5.66. Rick Knapp earned the victory for Y-D, tossing 3.2 scoreless innings, allowing just three hits and one walk. He struck out three.
The Red Sox are back in action Sunday evening as they travel to Wareham for a 7 p.m. start. Alex Gonzalez is scheduled to take the hill for Y-D.