Although the attention is on the Houston Astros and their pursuit of back to back World Series titles, their minor league affiliates began play last night.
The Buies Creek Astros played their first game of the 2018 on Thursday. Alas, the Single-A affiliate lost 4-3 in their season opener against the Salem Red Sox.
Early Start for Both Offenses
Buies Creek came out of the gate firing, led by a walk drawn by Ronnie Dawson. A single from Josh Rojas put runners in scoring position. However, a throwing error would lead to Dawson being thrown out at home, but advancing Rojas to third. Abraham Toros-Hernandez hit a sac fly, scoring the first run of the game for Buies Creek. Salem answered with a three run first inning, ultimately setting the pace for our Single-A Astros to catch up.
The Pace Was Too Much for Buies Creek
Buies Creek would go on to score one run in the third inning off a steal by Osvaldo Duarte during a double steal. They would score their last run of the game in the 6th, when Chas McCormick hit an RBI triple. Sable expanded their lead in the second inning, which was ultimately enough to claim the win over Buies Creek.
Keys Stats from the Game
Buies Creek made an effort to overcome an early deficit but struggled at the plate. In 29 plate appearances, they struck out 13 times. Runners were thrown out stealing and left 5 runners on base. Defensively, the also committed two errors. These errors led to putting runners in scoring position. Of their seven hits, four were for extra bases.
Jorge Alcala was responsible for all four runs scored by Salem. Kit Scheetz and Abdiel Saldan entered in relief, both held Salem scoreless. They were able to produce ten strikeouts, while only allowing three walks. However, the five hits and two walks from Alcala would give Salem all they would need to get the win.
Buies Creek will play Salem again tonight at 7:05pm, in the second of a four-game series. Hector Perez will take the mound for Buies Creek.
***Stats and Data courtesy of MiLB.com***