MANCHESTER, NH – For the second straight night, the New Hampshire Fisher Cats reached double digits in the run department, earning a 11-6 victory over the Portland Sea Dogs on Wednesday.
New Hampshire received offensive contributions up and down the lineup on Wednesday, with every starting Fisher Cat batter obtaining at least one hit during the evening.
It seemed like they’d all get one in the third inning alone, four of the first five Fisher Cat batters in the third recorded hits and the fifth was Jonathan Davis, who was hit by a pitch.
A visit to the mount temporarily calmed Portland starting pitcher Matthew Kent, but New Hampshire left the inning with five runs, giving them a lead they’d hold all night.
That didn’t mean the Sea Dogs gave up, though. The two teams traded runs in the fourth and they weren’t done.
Nick Lovullo’s triple in the top of the fifth capped a string of three straight at-bats bringing home a runner, putting Portland within a run of New Hampshire’s lead.
Unfortunately for the visitors, the Fisher Cats echoed their third inning explosion in the bottom of the fifth, with a Connor Panas three-run homer concluding a stretch of four straight hits that saw Kent’s night finally end.
Johnny Bladel brought home Danny Mars in the sixth for Portland, but that would be the last Sea Dog run of the evening, with Kirby Snead, Craig Breslow and Andrew Case combining to allow just two more Sea Dog hits after Bladel’s single.
Ryan Hissey added a solo shot in the eighth to provide New Hampshire one last bit of insurance, his second home run of the year.
Although he entered in the seventh inning with a lead, due to what was deemed “ineffective” relief by Fisher Cat hurlers up to that point, Craig Breslow was the game’s winning pitcher.
In just his second appearance after returning from the disabled list, Breslow (1-0) recorded three outs, striking out one and walking one.
Thomas Pannone lasted four innings in his first start this year for the Fisher Cats, returning after a suspension for a violation of Major League Baseball’s substance abuse policy.
Kent (5-5) got the loss for Portland, allowing 12 of New Hampshire’s 14 hits and 10 of their runs.
At the plate, Bladel and Austin Rei led the way for Portland with three hits apiece while Ramirez, Hissey, Juan Kelly and Jon Berti each recorded multiple hits for New Hampshire.
The series concludes on Thursday night as Portland puts Teddy Stankiewicz (5-6, 5.22 ERA) on the mound against New Hampshire’s Justin Dillon (1-3, 7.82 ERA).