Pelicans lose eighth straight, cling to first place in division

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans (29-24), Class-A Advanced affiliates of the Texas Rangers, lost their eighth straight game Friday, falling 3-2 against the Salem Red Sox (22-29) at Lewis-Gale Field.

With Winston-Salem’s win against Carolina, the Pelicans lead the southern division by just two games with 17 tilts remaining in the first half.

Right-hander Noe Ramirez (1-0) took the win out of the bullpen for the Red Sox, hurling two innings of relief. With the game tied 2-2 in the eighth inning, Henry Ramos lined a go-ahead single off Ryan Harvey (4-1), who suffered his first loss of the season. Matt Price worked a spotless ninth and earned his second save.

The Red Sox threatened to do further damage in the eighth. On Ramos’ bases-loaded go-ahead hit, Chris Grayson threw out Brandon Jacobs trying to score from second. Blake Swihart and Ramos were both caught trying to steal in the inning.

The Pelicans trailed 2-0 after four innings and left-hander Henry Owens carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning.  Chris Grayson broke up the no-no with a double in the sixth and scored on an RBI single from Drew Robinson. An inning-later, Patrick Cantwell tied the game on an RBI single. Moments later, Ramirez induced inning-ending double play, stranding the potential go-ahead run at third.

Right-hander Nick Martinez started for the Pelicans and allowed two earned runs on eight hits over five innings. Owens, his counterpart, collected seven strikeouts and held the Birds hitless through 5.1 innings.

The Red Sox snagged the early lead on an RBI single from Deven Marrero in the third inning. Henry Ramos added an RBI groundout in the fourth inning to make it 2-0 Red Sox.

Grayson, who threw out Jacobs at home in the eighth, also gunned down Matty Johnson trying to go from first to third in the fifth.

Randol Rojas and Jon Edwards each hurled scoreless innings for the Birds.

The Pelicans continue a three-game series with the Salem Red Sox Saturday at Lewis-Gale Field. First pitch is on tap for 6:05 p.m.

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