PAWTUCKET â€“ Want to truly understand why the Pawtucket Red Sox are playing meaningful games in September for the first time in three years and are winners of the I.L. North for the first time since 2003? Here are several items that stand out based on the observations of this particular scribe.
1). Run prevention
PAWTUCKET â€“ As his players danced to loud music while taking swigs of beer in the other room, Arnie Beyeler stood in the managerâ€™s office, his t-shirt completely soaked after several players cornered him near the visitors dugout and dumped beer all over him.
The fruits of victory are sweet if youâ€™re the Pawtucket Red Sox. The locals clinched the I.L. North Saturday night after rallying for a 12-7 victory past Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. The division title is the franchiseâ€™s first since 2003 and the fifth since 1991, when division play was introduced in the International League.
PAWTUCKET â€“ Some clubhouse reaction from Pawtucketâ€™s 4-3 win against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Friday night, a win the leaves the locals a combination of one win and a Lehigh Valley loss away from clinching the I.L. North
Manager Arnie Beyeler on throw by centerfielder Che-Hsuan Lin in the eighth inning that cut down the potential tying run at third base:
PAWTUCKET â€“ The Pawtucket Red Sox will have to wait just a little bit longer to call themselves Northern Division champions.
The PawSox kept up their end of the bargain after holding on for a 4-3 win against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Friday night at McCoy Stadium. Thanks to Lehigh Valley staging a 2-1 walk-off win over Buffalo, the magic number for the PawSox to officially clinch the division stands at a lone game.
Some things I think I think:
If the Gwinnett Braves earn the International League wild-card playoff berth this weekend, they probably wonâ€™t have ace pitcher Julio Teheran available for their first-round series against Pawtucket. The Atlanta Braves reportedly will use their top minor league prospect next Thursday in a doubleheader against the New York Mets.
PAWTUCKET â€“ Like a runner taking a short lead off of first base, Joey Gathright wishes to not look too far ahead.
The 30-year-old speedster understands why thereâ€™s a great deal of intrigue surrounding the Red Sox signing him out of the Independent ball ranks, and for a change the hubbub has nothing to do with him leaping over a car.
PAWTUCKET â€“ The Pawtucket Red Sox can clinch first place in the I.L. North tonight with a victory over Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and a Lehigh Valley loss.
The PawSox own a two-game lead plus a tiebreaker advantage over Lehigh Valley, which has lost its last four games. Pawtucket has dropped its last two to Rochester. There are four games left in the regular season.
The PawSox will send Matt Fox (9-4, 4.04 ERA) to the mound tonight against Scrantonâ€™s Adam Warren (6-7, 3.57).
Itâ€™s hard to believe, but itâ€™s true -- Shea and Central Falls, two teams who had traditionally appeared in the playoffs during the late â€™90s and 2000s, have not been in the playoffs in the last three seasons.
From 1998-2007, the Raiders qualified for the playoff nine times, making it as far as the Super Bowl on five of those occasions and winning it twice.
The Warriors also made five postseason appearances during that 10-year span time and won a championship in 2005.
CUMBERLAND â€” The Blackstone Valley area will be well represented on Friday night at Tucker Field with four local squads participating in a trio of Injury Fund tilts.
The two-quarter, non-league games, which begin at 6 p.m., kicks off with Central Falls battling Shea, followed by last yearâ€™s Division II state runner-up Tolman facing Cumberland at 7 p.m.
While tomorrow nightâ€™s game means nothing in the standings, Cumberland coach Chris Skurka will be eager to see how his club fares against the Tigers.
Asking a high school football coach to â€śpreviewâ€ť his team during the final week of preseason practice is really premature. Itâ€™s at least a week too early for that. Besides, coaches only want to talk about known commodities. Sometimes it takes half of a season to figure out the identity of these embryonic football teams.
Coaches are always willing to talk about certain subjects: veteran players, team leaders, practice schedules, lack of depth on the roster â€¦ thereâ€™s a whole litany of subjects that coaches are dealing with as the summer begins to fade away.