The Clearwater Threshers (77-60) opened their 2018 playoffs with an exciting 7-6 win over the Daytona Tortugas. Adonis Medina started and had an uneven start that matched his 2018 season. He showed flashes of brilliance like when he struck out Ibandel Isabel, the FSL HR leader with 35, on 3 consecutive change ups. But, he also had lapses like when he served up fastballs for big hits like Courtney Hawkins 2-run HR.
The Threshers were resilient. After Medina dispatched the Tortugas on 8 pitches in the first inning, they took an early lead on three first inning runs. Daniel Brito singled and Arquimedes Gamboa walked. Mickey scorched a ball to the right of the first baseman that he laid out to keep in the infield. The defender saved a run momentarily, but his only play was at first and Moniak had moved both runners into scoring position. Henri Lartigue doubled home the games first two runs and scored on a ground out after Luke Williams moved him to third with a single.
Medina had a 13-pitch second inning, but he threw just 7 strikes and walked batter. A double play helped him out of the inning. The offense tacked on a run in the bottom of the inning. Raul Rivas reached on a high throw on an infield b grounder. He stole second and eventually scored on Gamboa’s RBI single.
Medina walked the lead off batter in the third. A fielding error put runners on first and second. Another double play and a strike out helped him escape the inning, but he threw only 8 strikes in 15 pitches.
Medina opened the fourth with his 3-pitch strike out of Isabel. He had gotten big outfielder looking at a change up in the first (also on three pitches), and fed him three of the same in this at bat. Medina got the next batter looking. But with two out, he gave up a single and a first-pitch home run. He gave up 2 more hits in the 20-pitch inning before getting an inning-ending ground out.
The Threshers came right back and scored 2 runs in the bottom of the inning. Rivas singled wirth one out and scored on Kevin Markham’s RBI triple. Brito brought him home with am RBI single.
Daytona got one run back in the top of the fifth. Medina hit Isabel with two outs. A walk moved him into scoring position and a single brought him home.
Medina pitched a 1-2-3 sixth (7 pitches) and turned the game over to the bullpen. He gave up 3 runs on 6 hits, 3 walks, and a HBP. He struck out four. He threw 48 strikes in 79 pitches (60.8%), 12 of 27 first-pitch strikes (44.4%) and 4-three-ball counts. His FB was 91-95 mph and sat 93-94 all six innings. He 97 mph once in the third inning.
Trevor Bettencourt got knocked around in 1.2 innings. He gave up a 2-run HR in the seventh and blew the save with another run in the eighth. The inning ended when the Daytona batter hit a hard ground ball thru the 5-6 hole off reliever Addison Russ. Grenny Cumana got a great jump, scooped the ball cleanly, had time to take an extra crow hop, and threw a strike to Edgar Cabral to nail the runner trying to score from second.
Cumana led off the home eighth. As he approached the batter’s box, I called out, “Throw ’em out, hit it out, Grenny!”. Six pitches (and 4 foul balls) later, he crushed a HR into the left field bleachers.
Russ retired the turtles in order in the ninth to nail down the first game of the 3-game series. He needed just 8 pitches to induce 3 ground balls to Gamboa.
The Threshers collected 9 hits and 3 walks. Brito had 2 hits and an RBI. Henri Lartigue had 2 hits, a double, and 2 RBI.
Alejandro starts game two in Daytona. If needed, Mauricio starts game three. Assuming they win the series, Bailey Falter and David Parkinson are scheduled to start games one and two at the South Division’s representative. Ramon Rosso would be on tap for game three at Spectrum Field. Then Medina and Requena. Of, course, this could all change if they sweep or a starter gets knocked out early.
BTW, I’m not taking credit for Cumana’s HR just because I called out a silly remark. But, isn’t it amazing how often a player makes a great play to end an inning and then leads of the next half inning. And often makes another contribution.
- #1 Sixto Sanchez (4-3, 2.51) – placed on the 7-day DL in June, 2018
- #3 Adonis Medina (10-4, 4.12) – 6.0 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, HBP, 4 K, HR
- #6 Mickey Moniak (.270) went 0-4 with a K
- #11 Arquimedes Gamboa (.214) went 1-3 with a run scored, RBI, BB
- #12 Daniel Brito (.250) went 2-5 with a run scored, RBI, 2 K
- #16 Jose Gomez (.224)
- #19 David Parkinson (3-0, 1.24)
Lehigh Valley (84-56) starts their playoff series at Scranton on Wednesday. Enyel De Los Santos gets the start. Subsequent games will see Cole Irvin, Drew Anderson, Ranger Suarez, and Tom Eshelman draw the starting assignments.
- #8 Ranger Suarez (2-0, 2.74) –
- #9 Enyel De Los Santos (10-5, 2.63) –
- #10 Cole Irvin (14-4, 2.57) –
- #15 Dylan Cozens (.246) recalled to Philadelphia
- #20 Drew Anderson (9-4, 3.87) –
- #27 Tom Eshelman (2-13, 5.84) –
Lakewood (87-51) starts their playoff series at Kannapolis on Wednesday. Andrew Brown gets the start. Spencer Howard and Damon Jones draw games two and three.
- #7 Jhailyn Ortiz (.225)
- #17 Kyle Young (3-3, 3.10)
- #18 Spencer Howard (9-8, 3.78)
- #29 Nick Maton (.256)
- #30 Simon Muzziotti (.263)
Prospects who have finished the 2018 season.
- #2 Alec Bohm (3B, Williamsport Crosscutters) finished the season with a .224 SVG. The Phillies first round pick saw limited action due to a knee injury he suffered when he was struck by a pitched ball on July 9th. The 22-year old lost valuable development time and wasn’t activated again until August 20th. He was hitting .192 when he went down. He finished the season 14-55 (.255).
- #4 Adam Haseley (OF, Reading Phils) batted .316 for the Phils. He was promoted mid-season after posting a .300 AVG for the Threshers in High-A in 79 games (354 plate appearances). He hit a combined 11 HR across both teams.
- #5 JoJo Romero (LHP, Reading Phils) made 18 starts and tossed 106.2 innings before going onto the DL on July 20th. He posted a 7-6 record and 3.80 ERA. He struck out 100 batters (8.4 SO9). Romero ended the season on the DL.
- #13 Francisco Morales (RHP, Williamsport Crosscutters) showed marked regression after a promising 2017 campaign in the GCL. He made 13 starts and pitched 15 more innings but stumbled to a 4-5 record and 5.27 ERA. He was young for the league and his SO9 ticked up to 10.9, but his BB9 also ticked up to 5.3. Morales problem in XST was consistency. It was still a problem in Low-A.
- #14 Luis Garcia (SS, GCL Phillies West) finished the season with a league best .369 AVG. His .433 OBP placed third, his .488 SLG placed 13th, and his .921 OPS placed seventh. These were not only team leading but also the best of both Phillies GCL entries. Garcia’s 33 runs scored were fourth in the league following team mate Yerwin Trejo’s 40. He led the league with 62 hits. Placed second with 32 RBI. Trejo’s 23 stolen bases led the league, Garcia had 12.
- #21 Kyle Dohy (LHP, Reading Phils) zipped across 3 levels in his second season. He posted a 0.80 ERA in 24 games and 16.8 SO9 in 33.2 innings for Lakewood. He posted a 1.64 ERA and 14.7 SO9 in 11.0 innings for Clearwater. In 22.2 Double-A innings, Dohy has a 5.56 ERA but still posted an 11.9 SO9.
- #22 Cornelius Randolph (OF, Reading Phils) hit .241 as a 21-year old at Reading. He struggled mightily for the first 3 months, hitting .187 on the last day of June. But, he rebounded during the final two months (July 1st thru September 2nd) with a .314 AVG. He posted a .352 AVG in July.
- #23 Connor Seabold (RHP, Reading Phils) was promoted from Clearwater midway thru the season. He posted a combined 5-8 record with a 4.28 ERA. He struck out 132 in 130.1 innings (9.1 SO9) and walked 33 (2.3 BB9).
- #24 Dominic Pipkin (P, GCL Phillies West) finished with a 1-2 record and 3.64 ERA in 10 appearances, 8 starts. In limited action, he pitched 29.2 innings. In a SSS, he posted a 1.180 WHIP, 2.4 BB/9, and 5.5 K/9.
- #25 Kevin Gowdy (RHP, Williamsport Crosscutters) never made it off the DL as he spent the summer rehabbing from TJ surgery. He has been throwing off a mound and should see action during Instructs. Hopefully.
- #26 Jhordany Mezquita (LHP, Williamsport Crosscutters) made 9 starts before being mysteriously shutdown on August 23rd. He posted a 1-0 record and 3.60 ERA in 35.0 innings, striking out 41. However,he spent the final days of the season on the GCL Phillies West roster.
- #28 Colton Eastman (RHP, Williamsport Crosscutters) made 8 starts but was on an innings count and only pitched as many as three innings in his last two starts. He went 0-2 with a 3.00 ERA, but struck out 23 in 18 innings.
The Reading Fightin’ Phils finished the season in fourth place in the Eastern League Eastern Division with 64-73 (.467) record.
The Williamsport Crosscutters finished the season tied for last place in the New York-Penn League Pinckney Division with a 32-44 (.421) record.
The GCL Phillies East finished in first place in the GCL North Division with a 30-24 record. They lost a one-game semifinal on the road against the Palm Beach Cardinals.
The GCL Phillies West finished in second place in the GCL Northwest Division with a 30-24 (.556) record.
The DSL Phillies Red finished the season 31-40 (.437) in fifth place in the DSL South Division.
The DSL Phillies White finished the season 39-33 (.542) in fourth place in the DSL San Pedro Division.
Here’s the affiliate scoreboard from MiLB.
The rosters and lists are up to date as of September 4th.
9/4/18–Philadelphia recalled SS J.P. Crawford from Lehigh Valley
9/3/18–Philadelphia designated RHP Ben Lively for assignment.
9/3/18–Ranfi Casimiro assigned to Lehigh Valley from Reading
9/3/18–Lehigh Valley activated 2B Trevor Plouffe from the 7-day DL
9/3/18–Luis Cedeno assigned to Reading from Lakewood
9/3/18–RHP Ismael Cabrera assigned to Reading from Lakewood
9/3/18–Keylan Killgore assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport
9/3/18–Lakewood activated LHP Kyle Young from the 7-day DL
9/1/18–Philadelphia activated SS Pedro Florimon from the 60-day DL
9/1/18–Philadelphia activated RHP Edubray Ramos from the 10-day DL
9/1/18–Philadelphia designated 3B Jesmuel Valentin for assignment.
9/1/18–Toronto claimed RHP Mark Leiter Jr. off waivers from Philadelphia
9/1/18–Philadelphia recalled RF Dylan Cozens from Lehigh
9/1/18–Philadelphia recalled RHP Yacksel Rios from Lehigh
9/1/18–Philadelphia recalled CF Aaron Altherr from Lehigh
9/1/18–LHP Jeff Singer assigned to Lehigh Valley from Reading
9/1/18–Clearwater placed 1B Kyle Martin on the 7-day DL
9/1/18–1B Quincy Nieporte assigned to Clearwater from Lakewood