Salem Sox Batter
Attempting to ignore the prominence of the annual Salem Fair – chanting, screaming, hooting and hollering- the Salem Red Sox started slow but ended in extra innings coming away victorious over the Myrtle Beach Pelicans on Monday night.
In front of a very light 1,613-person crowd, it took four innings before there was any action on the scoreboard, when Salem scored the game's first run in the fourth.
Brandon Jacobs recorded a RBI double on the play scoring who turned out to be the man of the night, Stephan Welch, to put Salem ahead in the fourth inning. That didn’t last for long, though.
On a two out rally by the Pelicans, they notched up four runs on three straight RBI doubles during the top half of the fifth inning making the score 4-1.
The abrupt fifth inning led to the Sox bringing in left-handed, sidearm pitcher Manuel Rivera, to strikeout the next and last better of the inning
Wasting no time in the following inning, Myrtle Beach put runners aboard the bases early and finished by scoring two more runs making the score 6-1.
With a deflated feel to the game for the Sox, there was a brief rally in the bottom of the sixth when they loaded up the bases, but they were only able to score one run to make the score 6-2. Bringing in the run was the catcher, Blake Swihart.
As the Sox have been playing from behind for what seems to be the majority of the season, I’ve noticed a trend here at the home games… when there is a respectable crowd inside of LewisGale Field, the team seems more inclined to fight back harder.
But they put that theory to rest tonight!
With the fair laying claim to the Salem Civic Center, there seemed to be a restraint on everything at the game except the bats of the Myrtle Beach Pelicans - until the Sox reached the very last two frames of the night.
The Sox loaded up the bases with no outs and after scoring one run, walking in a run and stealing home twice on two wild pitches, the score was then tied at 6-6 and momentum had been stolen from the Pelicans in a matter of ten minutes.
Matt Price pitched a flawless tenth with three straight ground balls hit right at second base, giving Salem another chance to win in walk-off fashion.
After two outs and a grueling eight pitch at bat from Stephan Welch, he lined one to center field to end the game for the Sox, AGAIN in walk-off fashion.
And despite the lack of fans and the slow start from the Sox, there was still a roar of excitement from those in the ballpark when Welch sent the game-ending liner to center field.
Nothing beats watching the players and managers rush the field to maul their teammate. Not to mention “Jump On It” blaring through the stadium’s speaker’s just makes the fans want to get up and do the signature dance.
Getting the win for Salem was pitcher William Cuevas and after the very slow start and some good fortune for Salem, they were able to come out on top of the Myrtle Beach Pelicans by a final score of 7-6 after ten innings played.
Beginning an eight game home stand tonight, Salem will play at home from now until July 15. Weekday games begin at 7:05p.m, Saturday games begin at 6:05 p.m. and Sunday games begin at 4:05 p.m.