NEW BRITAIN, Conn. — Brandon Waring drew a bases-loaded walk on a 3-2 pitch by Jose Valdez (1-1) in the bottom of the ninth inning, as the New Britain Rock Cats (16-20) scored three times in their last call to beat the Portland Sea Dogs (22-14), 4-3, on Wednesday night.
Trailing 3-1 in the ninth inning, the Rock Cats had five straight hits off Michael Olmsted and Valdez. Cory Wimberly led off with a single and Tony Thomas doubled. Valdez relieved Olmsted, and allowed back-to-back RBI singles to Nate Hanson and Kenny Vargas. Reynaldo Rodriguez singled to load the bases. Valdez induced a 4-2 out at the plate, but walked Waring to end the night.
Former Sea Dog Daniel Turpen (1-1) pitched a perfect ninth to earn the win. Valdez worked a 1/3 of an inning to suffer his first loss in the Red Sox system.
Mookie Betts (1-for-4, BB) made things happen right away, leading off the game with a double, and scored on two wild pitches. Betts has now reached base safely in 64 straight games dating back to last Aug. 2, but 69 including last year’s playoffs.
Portland took a 2-0 lead in the second inning against Duffy. With one out, Henry Ramos singled and scored on a single to right field by Shannon Wilkerson. In the seventh, Deven Marrero’s two-out single put Portland in front 3-0, but a lead for the second straight night would not hold up.
Henry Owens took a no-decision, lasting only four innings due to pitch count (87 pitches/47 strikes). Owens did not allow a hit, fanned eight, but walked five. Portland pitchers walked a season-high 10 batters, giving up seven hits.
New Britain cracked the ice in the seventh inning when Hanson singled to right field, but an error by Ramos allowed A.J. Petterson to score.
Rock Cats starter Tyler Duffy was solid over five innings of work, giving up two runs (one earned) on five hits, two walks and five strikeouts.
Portland has lost three straight on the road and had gone nine road series without a loss, dating back to Aug. 13-15, 2013 at Altoona.