The Red Sox Minor league teams, namely the Pawtucket and Salem Red Sox, enjoyed, or are enjoying, post-season play.
The Pawtucket Red Sox are both in pursuit of a pennant race. Pawtucket is looking to accomplish an unprecedented back to back Governors Cup win. The Governor’s cup is earned by Minor League Baseball’s best triple-A team. As of Thursday, they are tied with the Durham Bulls. They return to McCoy Stadium for game three with former Portland Sea Dog pitcher, Matt Barnes on the mound.
The reason this team has been able to go as far as it has is due to the teams strong pitching, many of them promoted from the Double-A Red Sox affiliate Portland Sea Dogs at the end of July and August. Names like Matt Barnes, Keith Couch, and most importantly Anthony Ranaudo made a significant difference in the five-man rotation and the bullpen. Other members of the pitching staff, like Steven Wright, are solid. Catcher Christian Vasquez and Heiker Meneses were also promoted making plays in the field and at the plate. It is unfortunate to see the Portland team lose so many players, yet heartening to see the aforementioned promoted in the system.
The Salem Red Sox have been playing strong in the Carolina Division all season long. Despite their roster changes to promotion to Portland, ME, the Red Sox of Virginia were capable of clinching the Division. This is the first time in five years that Salem was in contention for the division. Players like Blake Swihart, Sean Coyle, and pitcher William Cuevas made the difference in the last few weeks of the season. They lost an amazing pitcher, Henry Owens, in August to promotion to the Portland Sea Dogs. Still, the team overcame the loss of this strong arm and won the division.