Lehigh Valley (39-50) beat the Pawtucket Red Sox 4-2. Aaron Nola gave up 2 runs in the first then he and the bullpen held the Sox scoreless the rest of the way. Juan Gutierrez gets the win, Adam Loewen his 4th save. Aaron Altherr (.313) went 2-5. Russ Canzler had 2 hits, a HR (7), and 2 RBI. Four different Sox stole 5 bases off Gabriel Lino.
Reading (46-41) lost to the Akron RubberDucks 3-2. Colin Kleven was lifted after 5.2 innings and 105 pitches in favor of Colton Murray. Kleven had opened the sixth with a walk and double before striking out the next 2 batters. Murray was brought in and blew the save by issuing a 2-run single. He walked in the go-ahead run in the seventh to earn the loss.
Every starter had at least one hit except Art Charles (3 Ks). J.P. Crawford (.273) went 1-3 with 2 walks. Kelly Dugan (.333) went 1-4 with a double and a walk. Brock Stassi (.311) went 1-3 with a walk. Andrew Knapp (.302) went with a double and RBI. Cam Perkins (.262) went 2-4 with 2 doubles and an RBI. Harold Martinez (.300) went 1-4 with a double.
Perkins had an outfield assist.
Clearwater (49-37) beat the Fort Myers Miracle 3-0 and dropped them out of a tie for the South Division lead. David Whitehead threw 105 pitches in 8.0, six-hit innings. He issued 1 walk and struck out two. Jesen Therrien pitched a perfect ninth for his first save. I listened to the Fort Myers broadcast and they claimed that Whitehead was as strong in the eighth in as he had been earlier, still hitting 93 with his 4-seamer and 88 with his 2-seamer. He induced 13 ground outs against 4 air outs.
The game was a classic pitchers’ duel for seven innings. The Miracle’s starter, Mat Batts, also pitched shutout ball while striking out 10 Threshers. Clearwater finally broke through when the Miracle went to their bullpen in the eighth.
The opportunistic Threshers used a single by Chase Harris, double by Andrew Pullin, and HBP by Rhys Hoskins to load the bases with nobody out. Chace Numata walked to break the scoreless tie. Willians Astudillo grounded out to short with the infield drawn in to plate the second run (the shortstop didn’t handle the ball cleanly and only had one play at first). Aaron Brown drove in the third run with a sacrifice fly into the LCF gap.
Malquin Canelo (.219) went 0-4 with a walk. Carlos Tocci (.256) had the night off. Andrew Pullin (.271) went 1-5 with a double. Rhys Hoskins (.259) went 1-3 with a HBP. Chace Numata (.289) went 1-3 with a walk and RBI. Aaron Brown 0-3 with a SF and RBI. Willians Astudillo (.302) went 0-4 with an RBI. Derek Campbell went 3-4 and 2 stolen bases (2).
Lakewood (41-43) lost to the Hickory Crawdads 7-3. Elniery Garcia gave up 4 runs in 6 innings. Manny Martinez faced just 4 batters (that never sounds good). Calvin Rayburn allowed one of two inherited runners to score (on a SF). Rayburn and Jason Zgardowski no-hit the Crawdads over the final 3 innings.
The BlueClaws scored 2 first innings runs to give Garcia a lead then went dormant until scoring a run in the ninth. Herlis Rodriguez (.306) went 2-5 with an RBI. Drew Stankiewicz went 2-5 with a double. Scott Kingery went 1-5 with 3 K. Kyle Martin (.322) went 2-5 with an RBI. Cord Sandberg had the night off.
H-Rod had an outfield assist.
Williamsport (15-5) swept two 7-inning games from the Tri-City ValleyCats 1-0 and 3-2. In game one, Alejandro Arteaga pitched 6.0, two-hit, shutout innings, striking out five. Skylar Hunter picked up the win when the Cutters scored in the seventh. They parlayed 2 of their 3 hits into the scoring rally. Josh Tobias singled with one out. After a walk and a strike out, Gregori Rivero singled to center for the walkoff.
In game two, Jose Taveras gave up 2 runs in 5.0 innings. Luis Morales and Rober Tasin pitched shutout innings in relief and Tasin got his 4th save. The Cutters scored first on a bases loaded walk to Brendon Hayden and a sacrifice fly by Josh Tobias. After the Cats came back to tie in the fourth, the Cutters went ahead to stay on Austin Bossart’s RBI single.
Zack Coppola (.333) went 1-4. Venn Biter (.304) went 1-2 with a walk. Jose Pujols (.329) went 0-2 with a walk. Brendon Hayden (.316) went 0-0 with 2 walks, a HBP, and an RBI. Josh Tobias (.351) went 1-2 with a SF and RBI. Austin Bossart went 2-3 with an RBI.
Biter (5) and Coppola (8) stole bases. Biter had an outfield assist.
GCL Phillies (13-4) lost to the GCL Pirates 4-3. Ismael Cabrera, Carlos Indriago, and Edgar Garcia combined to allow zero earned runs on 9 hits, 1 walk, and 1 strike out in 9.0 innings. Unfortunately, errors by second baseman Arquimedes Gamboa and Cabrera to start the second inning led to 4 unearned runs.
The offense had a couple opportunities to take control of the game, but the umpire’s “fluid” strike zone had a big impact on the game. In particular, there were strike calls when Randolph was at the plate that greatly affected the count. At key times, the strike zone was expanded whenever a pitcher fell behind 2-0. Not only did the “Maddox zone” (6-8 inches off the plate outside) come into play, but I saw letter high pitches called strikes for the first time since I played. And it’s not that he called those pitches strikes (although they weren’t), it’s that he wasn’t even consistent within an at bat, let alone from inning to inning.
Jonathan Arauz went 2-3 with a triple, 2 walks, and an RBI. Cornelius Randolph (.286) went 1-5 with a double. Gamboa went 3-4 with a double and stolen base.
*** I forgot to include this with the original post. Randolph made a couple very good plays in Friday’s game. He successfully handled 4 chances, but two stand out. The first was on a foul ball down the left field line. Randolph had to cover a lot of ground before diving to make the catch well into foul territory. (If you are familiar with Ashburn Field, he was within few feet of the border that designates the “out of play” area.) The second was on a line drive to left. He had to come in a little to make the catch, no big deal. But the runner on first had misjudged Randolph’s range and was past half-way to second. Randolph collected himself and doubled the runner off first (with a one bounce throw).***
DSL Phillies (21-15) beat the DSL Rays 2-1. Joel Cabrera gave up 1 run in 8.0, four-hit innings.
VSL Phillies (20-27) beat the VSL Rays 5-2. Joseph Miranda, Malvin Matos, and Adrian Acosta hit their first home runs.
Here’s the affiliate scoreboard from MiLB.
Extra Innings –
- Signed free agent Dominican OF Jhailyn Ortiz to a minor league contract ($4.0M per BA’s Ben Badler).
- Signed Venezuelan catcher Rafael Marchan ($200,000).
- Signed Dominican infielder Kuedy Bocio .
- Signed Dominican left-hander pitcher Manuel Silva.
- Reading Fightin Phils placed SS KC Serna on the 7-day disabled list.
- Reading Fightin Phils placed RHP Mark Leiter on the temporarily inactive list.
- 2B Devin Lohman assigned to Reading Fightin Phils from Clearwater Threshers.
- RHP Edubray Ramos assigned to Reading Fightin Phils from Clearwater Threshers.
- Luis Espiritu assigned to Clearwater Threshers from GCL Phillies.