A brief look at the action in the Red Sox’ minor league system on Wednesday:
TRIPLE A PAWTUCKET RED SOX: 8-3 LOSS VS. BUFFALO
■ Though he allowed six runs on nine hits in six innings, knuckleballer Steven Wright struck out 10, matching a career-high he’d achieved twice before: In 2007, when he was a conventional pitcher in his first full year of pro ball, and again in 2014.
■ Jackie Bradley Jr. went 2-for-4, a performance that included a double against veteran big league lefthander Randy Wolf. Bradley, who turned 25 on Sunday, is hitting .321/.377/.411.
■ Bryce Brentz went 2-for-4. Both of his hits were doubles against lefties. The 26-year-old is 9-for-21 with a .429/.500/.619 line against southpaws thus far this year and .308/.373/.558 overall.
■ Outfielder Rusney Castillo, manager John Farrell told reporters in Tampa Bay, has begun a throwing program and will soon start to resume swings after being sidelined for the last week and a half by right shoulder inflammation. Assistant GM Mike Hazen said on WEEI on Thursday that Castillo may be about 10 days from returning to games.
■ Garin Cecchini, who landed on the seven-day disabled list with a left shoulder contusion and inflammation last week, is close to returning.
■ One day removed from his seven-inning, complete-game, two-hit shutout – which lowered his ERA over a roughly 53-week span to 1.46 – Brian Johnson remained a buzzworthy topic. A couple evaluators on hand in that start suggested that his stuff was unexceptional in the outing. Still, while they’d seen a sharper pitch mix from the lefthander, his execution and ability to avoid falling into patterns continued to make Johnson look like a pitcher who could be plugged into the back end of a rotation right away. Tim Britton of the Providence Journal examined Johnson’s coming of age as a pitcher over the last year.
DOUBLE A PORTLAND SEA DOGS: 10-8 LOSS AT NEW BRITAIN
■ Righthander Pat Light yielded three runs on five hits in three innings, but the line is somewhat misleading, as Light retired the first seven batters he faced in order before evidently tiring in his fourth inning (he entered with two outs in the fifth and cruised through the sixth and seventh before his outing came apart in the eighth). He also struck out two and walked none, giving the 2012 supplemental first-rounder 11 strikeouts and two walks in nine innings of work in his new life as a reliever.
■ First baseman Jantzen Witte had his fourth multi-hit game in his last six contests, going 2-for-5 with a double. The 25-year-old is hitting .349/.362/.488 with 13 RBIs (the product of a 7-for-14 performance with runners in scoring position), one year after he delivered a .312/.379/.500 line with 93 RBIs in his first full pro season, split between Single A Greenville and High A Salem.
HIGH A SALEM RED SOX: 4-1 WIN VS. MYRTLE BEACH
■ Righthander Jake Dahlstrand added to his dominant start to the year, allowing just one unearned run on three hits in seven innings of work while walking one and striking out two. He’s won all three of his starts, working at least six innings in each, has a 0.95 ERA, and has held opponents to a .138 average with a pitch-to-contact approach that has seen him generate 10 strikeouts and four walks in 19 innings. He may force an early-season promotion to Portland.
■ Centerfielder Manuel Margot went 0-for-2 but reached base twice on walks and, for the 11th straight game, didn’t strike out. The 20-year-old is hitting .357/.391/.619. One day after he was caught stealing for the first time in 2015, he swiped a pair of bags, his fourth and fifth of the season.
SINGLE A GREENVILLE DRIVE: 7-3 WIN AT LEXINGTON
■ Michael Chavis went 2-for-4 with a double, continuing his recent uptick in performance. In his last four games, he’s 5-for-16 with a walk, two doubles, and a homer, improving his line from .148/.233/.296 to .209/.277/.465. He’s tied for the team lead with nine runs batted in.
■ Mauricio Dubon had his second straight two-hit game and his sixth multi-hit performance in 12 contests this year, boosting his average to .367 (sixth in the South Atlantic League) with a .392 OBP and .449 slugging mark. The 20-year-old also stole a pair of bases, giving him four in six attempts this year.
Follow Alex Speier on Twitter at @alexspeier.