The organization’s three teams that remained active in the post season were in action Friday night. One advanced to the next round, one remained alive in their current series, and one was eliminated.
Lehigh Valley was unable to extend their season and were routed at home.
Reading returned home and their offense came alive as they forced a fourth game.
Lakewood completed a sweep of the Northern Division series and will wait for the winner of the Southern Division.
Here’s the affiliate scoreboard from MiLB.
Lehigh Valley (85-58, 0-3) Went on the road for the continuation of their series against Scranton, and actually scored some runs, but were eliminated, 11-3. An eight run fourth inning sealed their fate.
Phil Klein was responsible for 10 of the RailRiders’ 11 runs, although Joely Rodriguez allowed 2 inherited runners to score. His line was – 3.1 IP, 7 H, 10 R, 8 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, 1 HR. Joe DeNato struck out five in 2.2 innings of relief.
Trailing 3-0 after Scranton scored 3 times in the first, the IronPigs ended a 21-inning scoreless streak when they scored their first run of the series in the fourth inning on Jesse Valentin’s two-out single. They scored their final two runs in the sixth inning after falling behind 11-1 on Valentin’s two-run single.
The IronPigs mustered 10 hits and drew 4 walks, but went 3-14 with RISP and left 12 men on base. They struck out 13 times.
J.P Crawford got his first hit and went 1-5 (.083). Nick Williams went 1-2 (.222). And, Andrew Knapp went 1-5 (.083). Cedric Hunter (.250) went 2-2 with 2 walks, and Jesse Valentin went 2-4 with 3 RBI (.444).
- Wednesday, September 7th: lost to Scranton, 2-0 (Ben Lively, 0-1)
- Thursday, September 8th: lost to Scranton, 7-0 (Anthony Vasquez, 0-1)
- Friday, September 9th: lost to Scranton, 11-3 (Phil Klein, 0-1)
Reading (89-52, 1-2) Returned home to the friendly confines of First Energy Stadium and put a beat down on the Thunder, 13-5. The victory has enabled the Phils to extend their playoff run, and they can even the series Saturday in game four.
Elniery Garcia pitched well in his first appearance at the AA level. He limited the Thunder to one unearned run during the first five innings, a run set up by his own error on a pick off throw. By the time the Thunder scored two runs off Garcia in the sixth inning, the Phils had built a 9-1 lead. Garcia’s line was 6.0 IP, 7 hits, 3 runs (2 earned), 1 walk, 1 HBP, and 4 K. Will Morris earned the save with three innings of two-run relief, both on solo home runs.
Jorge Alfaro gave Garcia and the Phils an early lead with a two-out, solo home run in the first inning. The Phils added three runs in the second when Scott Kingery reached base with a two out single. He scored on KC Serna’s RBI double. Roman Quinn’s RBI single scored Serna. And, Quinn came home on Christian Marrero’s RBI double.
Alfaro hit a second home run with one out in the fifth. After Dylan Cozens drew a walk the Thunder pulled their starter. His relief was greeted with a two-run home run by Rhys Hoskins. Jake Fox singled and Harold Martinez hit a two-run home run before another out was recorded.
The Phils added two runs in the sixth on an RBI single by Cozens and a wild pitch. They added two more in the seventh on RBI singles by Serna and Alfaro.
The Phils mounted a 16-hit attack. All nine starters contributed at least one hit. All but Jake Fox and Scott Kingery drove in runs. They went 4-9 with RISP.
Jorge Alfaro (.462) went 4-5 with 2 HR, 3 RBI, and 3 runs scored. I expect the pendulum that makes prospect judgments on small samples will swing back from disappointment to enthusiastic support for the young catcher.
Cozens, Hoskins, Martinez, and Serna had two hits apiece. Hoskins, Martinez, and Serna had two RBI each. In addition to his errant pick off throw, Garcia also picked a runner off first.
- Wednesday, September 7th: lost to Trenton, 3-2 (Mark Leiter, 0-1)
- Thursday, September 8th: lost to Trenton, 9-4 (Ricardo Pinto, 0-1)
- Friday, September 9th: defeated Trenton, 13-5 (Elniery Garcia, 1-0)
- Saturday, September 10th: v. Trenton, 7:05 PM – Tyler Viza (if necessary)
- Sunday, September 11th: v. Trenton, 6:05 PM – John Richy (if necessary)
Lakewood (74-65, 2-0) Beat Hagerstown, 5-2, and swept the SAL North Division Championship. They await the South Division winner of Rome @ Charleston, which will be decided Saturday.
Jose Taveras pitched seven solid innings. He allowed 2 runs on 7 hits, but walked NONE and struck out four. Taveras needed only 81 pitches and threw 58 strikes (71.6%). Two of the hits Taveras allowed came at the start of the eighth inning. He was lifted in favor of Jake Waguespack with two on and nobody out. After retiring two batters and walking the bases loaded, J-Dub gave way to Zach Morris who got the final out of the inning and stranding three inherited runners. Sutter McLoughlin got the final three outs and earned the save.
The BlueClaws opened the scoring early. Mark Laird led off with a single. A couple outs later Damek Tomscha walked. And, Wilson Garcia drove both runners home with a double. He gave the Suns a momentum shift when he was thrown out trying to stretch the double into a triple. Hagerstown responded with a solo HR to lead off their first inning.
The BlueClaws re-established their two-run lead in the third inning. Laird singled with one out and moved to third on a single by Jose Pujols and walk bu Tomscha. Laird scored on a fielding error by the third baseman but Pujols was thrown out at home trying to score on the same play.
The Suns scratched out a run in the fifth inning on a bunt single with runners on the corners. But, the BlueClaws added two more runs in the seventh. Laird walked and Cornelius Randolph singled. One out after a pitching change, Tomscha cleared the bases with a two-run triple.
Mark Laird went 4-4 with a walk and stolen base as he scored 3 runs for the BlueClaws. Damek Tomscha went 1-1 with a triple, 2 walks, and was hit by a pitched ball. He had 2 RBI and scored a run. Wilson Garcia went 1-4 with a double and 2 RBI. Cornelius Randolph went 1-5 with a run scored. Jose Pujols went 1-5.
- Wednesday, September 7th: defeated Hagerstown, 6-1 (Grant Dyer, 1-0)
- Friday, September 9th: defeated Hagerstown, 5-2 (Jose Taveras, 1-0)
- Monday, September 12th: @TBD
- Tuesday, September 13th: @TBD
- Wednesday, September 14th: No game scheduled
- Thursday, September 15th: v. TBD
- Friday, September 16th: v. TBD (if necessary)
- Saturday, September 17th: v. TBD (if necessary)
Did you know that the three previous times that Lakewood qualified for the post season, they have won the SAL championship? Including this year’s two wins, the BlueClaws are 17-4 in the post season. (from Greg on the BlueClaws home page)
2006 – Defeated Lexington 2-0 & Augusta 3-1
2009 – Defeated Kannapolis 2-0 & Greenville 3-1
2010 – Defeated Hickory 2-1 & Greenville 3-1
2016 – Defeated Hagerstown 2-0 & ?
Clearwater: The Clearwater Threshers received some end of season honors for a few players and their manager. Kirsten Karbach covers the story on the Threshers home page.
Organization: The Phillies’ organization had the highest winning percentage this season among stateside leagues; and, the highest all-time (well at least for the last eight seasons) according to Baseball America’s Matt Eddy as reported in his recent article.
- 9/9 – OF Tim Tebow assigned to GCL Mets. (Their Instructs just turned into a media circus.)
- 9/9 – Lehigh Valley placed Jimmy Cordero on the 7-day DL. Right shoulder strain.
- 9/9 – LHP Joey DeNato assigned to Lehigh Valley from Reading.
- Organization Rosters are up to date.