Groome Gets First Start With Class-A Lowell Spinners
Jason Groome got his first start with the Lowell Spinners on Sept. 2, a few days before the Boston Red Sox’s short-season Class-A squad concluded its regular season. Now, if the lefthander from Barnegat gets another opportunity on the mound, it will be during the playoffs.
The Spinners were scheduled to begin a best-of-three, New York-Penn League playoff series against the Hudson Valley Renegades on Wednesday, Sept. 7, but whether Groome will see any action remains to be seen.
During a 5-3 win in the first game of a double-header against the Connecticut Tigers last Friday, Groome pitched 2 2/3 innings, didn’t allow a hit but did give up four walks, including one which led to a run scored against him, and struck out two batters.
In the home half of the first inning, Groome induced a flyout to left field against the first batter he faced at the Class-A level, Daniel Woodrow. Groome then walked the next two batters – Cole Baumi and Jacob Robson – before fanning Austin Athmann and getting Josh Lester to popup to third base.
After getting Daniel Pinero to ground out to second base to start the bottom of the second, Groome got Tanner Donnels to fly out to center field, before giving up a walk to Mario Sanjur. A throwing error allowed Junnell Ledezma to reach first and Sanjur to go to second, but Groome got Woodrow to ground out to second to end the threat.
With the Spinners up, 4-0, heading into the bottom of the third, Groome got Baumi to ground out to second base, then whiffed Robson for the second out. After giving up another free pass, this time to Athmann, Groome was lifted for reliever Daniel Zandona, who went the rest of the way and earned the victory but not before he gave up a double to center by Lester, scoring Athmann from first.
Groome, who has a 3.38 ERA, ended up throwing 56 pitches, 28 for strikes, and faced 13 batters as the Spinners captured their 45th victory of the season.
If the Spinners (47-29) knock off Hudson Valley (47-27) in the playoff semifinals, they will play the winner of a series between the Staten Island Yankees (44-31) and State College Spikes (50-26) for the New York-Penn League championship in a best-of-three series.
In three brief starts in the Red Sox minor-league system – including two previous starts in the Gulf Coast Rookie League – Groome has yet to earn a decision. His 2 2/3 innings with the Spinners was his longest outing thus far.
After striking out eight in four innings with the GCL Sox, Groome was promoted to the Lowell, Mass., affiliate on Aug. 30. —D.B.