PORTLAND, Maine — The Portland Sea Dogs slugged three homers over the first two innings and held on to defeat the New Hampshire Fisher Cats 6-3 Friday night at Hadlock Field.
The win snapped a four-game losing streak and upped the season series to 8-3 in favor of Portland.
Derrik Gibson wasted no time and put the Sea Dogs in front with a solo home run to left-center on the second pitch he saw from starter Scott Copeland.
Portland increased its lead with three more runs in the second inning, courtesy of two more homers. With one down, David Chester crushed a solo homer to center and Mike Brenly followed two batters later with a mammoth two-run shot in left center.
Jeremy Kehrt got the spot start for Portland and the righthander maneuvered his way through the first two innings, stranding a pair at second and third in each frame along the way.
He continued to put up zeros over the third and fourth innings and had set down five in a row, before Jorge Flores began the fifth with an infield double. Three batters later Michael Crouse drove home a run with a single to center and cut the Portland to 4-1.
The Sea Dogs responded with a run of their own in the home-half of the fifth. Sean Coyle was hit by a pitch, stole second, moved to third on a throwing error, and scored on a wild pitch from Copeland (5-7).
Kehrt (1-0) returned to the sixth and retired the side in order to complete his outing. He gave the Sea Dogs a quality start and allowed just the one run on six hits in the six frames; he walked one, hit one and struck out five.
Noe Ramirez took over for Kehrt in the seventh and pitched a scoreless inning, before getting roughed up for two runs in the eighth. The Cats (43-49) got three doubles from Matt Newman, Andy Burns, and K.C. Hobson and plated the pair to cut the deficit to 6-3.
Ramirez allowed two more base runners in the ninth inning, but induced a ground ball to short, which Ryan Dent gobbled up and fired to second to get the middle runner and end the game. The righty picked up his 10th save in as many chances.