There were fireworks at Hadlock Field after the Portland Sea Dogs’ game Sunday evening, and it gave the paid attendance of 7,368 something to cheer about following an 8-1 loss to the Hartford Yard Goats.

Boston Red Sox No. 1 prospect Yoan Moncada led off the bottom of the first inning with a bang, lining a solo home run into the bullpen in right field. It was Moncada’s third Double-A home run and second in three games.

That gave the Sea Dogs (30-52) a 1-0 lead that lasted into the third inning. Then the early shine on starting pitcher Jalen Beeks’ outing dissipated.

Beeks made it through the first eight Yard Goats (44-37) batters with relative ease, allowing just a two-out walk in the first. Michael Benjamin popped out for the first out of the third, but No. 9 hitter Zach Osborne doubled off the Maine Monster in left field for the first of five straight hits given up by Beeks. The next four each drove in a run, then two batters later Correlle Prime collected the third hit of the inning off the tall wall for another RBI hit, giving the Yard Goats a 5-1 lead.

Beeks, an emerging prospect in the Red Sox farm system, threw 30 pitches in the third after tossing a combined 33 across the first two innings.

The left-hander, making just his third start for Portland, got just one out in the fourth, and it was a sacrifice bunt. Michael Benjamin led off with another wall-ball double, then Osborne bunted him to third. Raimel Tapia singled between first and second to make it 6-1, then Pat Valaika walked on four pitches to send Beeks to the showers after just 3 1/3 innings.


“He didn’t pitch well tonight. He was up in the zone,” Sea Dogs manager Carlos Febles said of Beeks. “Unfortunately, he’s a kid that has good stuff, but just not his day.”

Jake Drehoff came on in relief and induced an inning-ending double play.

The doubles — and hits in general — kept coming for the Yard Goats against Drehoff. Prime hit a two-out two-bagger in the fifth, then Benjamin led off the sixth with another. Three singles later in the inning drove in two more Hartford runs to make it 8-1.

Luis Ysla finished off the fifth for Drehoff by striking out Ryan McMahon, who K’ed four times in the game.

The Yard Goats provided the booms in the game, pounding out 17 hits, including eight doubles — one shy of the Sea Dogs’ record for an opponent. Benjamin provided two of the doubles and Tapia and Rosell Herrera had four hits apiece.

“They were getting good pitches to hit, and they weren’t missing it,” Febles said. “We left too many pitches up over the plate and they made us pay in a big way. It seems like they played pepper against that wall.”


Hartford sent German Marquez to the mound to start the game, and the Colorado Rockies prospect was dominant after giving up Moncada’s lead-off homer, scattering three other hits and two walks while striking out five over six innings. It was the sixth straight game Marquez lasted at least six innings, and gave the right-hander his seventh win of the season.

“This is the third time we have faced him, and we haven’t had good luck against him,” Febles said of Marquez. “He got good stuff, got a good fastball, good secondary stuff. He kept us in check and we fell behind early.”

The Hartford bullpen allowed just two hits, which came from defensive replacement Rainel Rosario and Jake Romanski (two hits) against Rayan Gonzalez in the ninth.

The power outage for Portland (six hits, five singles) came after the Sea Dogs scored at least five runs in each of the first four games of the five-game series, which included three wins.

“We couldn’t get anything going offensively,” Febles said.

The Sea Dogs now go on the road for seven games against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats and the Yard Goats before the All-Star break.

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