Sunday, December 21, 2014

Phillies Minor League Report: Maikel Franco helps IronPigs rally to victory

Phillies prospect Maikel Franco. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)
Phillies prospect Maikel Franco. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)

Here's how the Phillies' minor league teams fared on Wednesday, July 9:

Lehigh Valley IronPigs – Triple A

The IronPigs avoided a series sweep with a 7-4 win over the Indianapolis Indians at Victory Field in Indianapolis, Ind.

Right-handed starter Barry Enright (4-8, 5.13 ERA) got off to a slow start and gave up three runs in the first inning to put hit team in an early hole. However, Enright followed with six shutout inning and earned the win. Enright was charged with three runs on seven hits and walk while striking out seven over seven innings.

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    Third baseman Maikel Franco continued to rake at the plate as he went 2-for-4 with two doubles, a walk and two RBI. In his last eight games, Franco is batting 15-30 (.500) with eight extra-base hits.

    Right fielder Cam Perkins and catcher Sebastian Valle both went 2-for-5 with two doubles, a run scored and a strikeout.

    The IronPigs (44-48) will travel for a four-game series with the Louisville Bats that will bring the teams to the all-star break. Righty Sean O'Sullivan (3-6, 4.13 ERA) is slated to start the opener on Thursday.

    Reading Fightin Phils – Double A

    The Fightin Phils scored 10 unanswered runs to rout the Trenton Thunder, 10-1, at FirstEnergy Stadium in Reading, Pa.

    Left-handed starter Adam Loewen (1-2, 4.14 ERA) delivered seven superb innings to earn the victory. Loewen allowed only one run on six hits while striking out three.

    The offense recorded 12 hits to power a team that had lost 19 of its last 21 games.

    Four Fightin Phils had multi-RBI games: second baseman Albert Cartwright (3-for-5 with a double, a run scored and two RBI), designated hitter Jake Fox (2-for-3 with a double, a walk, a run scored and two RBI), left fielder Aaron Altherr (2-for-4 with two doubles, a walk, a run scored and two RBI) and shortstop KC Serna (1-for-4 with a double and two RBI).

    Looking for a series split, the Fightin Phils (36-52) will turn to righty Chris Bootcheck (0-1, 9.00 ERA) in the finale on Thursday.

    Clearwater Threshers – Class A-Advanced

    The Threshers used a five-run ninth inning to rally past the Tampa Yankees, 6-5, at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Fla.

    Phillies lefty Cliff Lee threw four innings in a rehab start. Lee gave up three runs on four hits and a walk while striking out four.

    Trailing 5-1 heading into the ninth, first baseman Art Charles hit an RBI single and catcher Corey Bass recorded an RBI double to bring the go-ahead run to the plate. Center fielder Brian Pointer blasted a three-run home run to cap off the rally. It was his eighth homer of the season.

    The teams will travel back to Clearwater to wrap up the series on Thursday. The Threshers (9-10 in second half, 26-61 overall) will send righty Miguel Nunez (2-6, 6.22 ERA) to the hill in the finale.

    Lakewood BlueClaws – Class A

    The BlueClaws rallied from a six-run deficit to defeat the Hagerstown Suns, 9-7, at Municipal Stadium in Hagerstown, Md.

    The win prevented a three-game sweep.

    The culprit for the early hole was right-handed starter Jesen Therrien, who allowed all six runs in the second inning and was removed with two outs in the frame.

    The offense immediately started to crawl back in the game.

    In the third, second baseman Andrew Pullin blasted a two-run home run, his seventh of the season, to put his team on the scoreboard.

    A four-run fourth by the BlueClaws tied the game at six apiece. Mitch Walding's two-RBI double, Enmanuel Serra's RBI bunt and Carlos Tocci's RBI double made it a new game.

    After each team scored a run and the game tied at 7-7 in the seventh, Walding plated another run with an RBI single, which proved to be the game-winning hit.

    Walding finished the game 2-for-4 with a double, a walk, a run scored, three RBI and a strikeout.

    First baseman Zach Green (3-for-5 with two doubles and two runs scored) and right fielder Dylan Cozens (3-for-5 with a double, a run scored, an RBI, a stolen base and a caught stealing) also played key roles in the comeback.

    Righty Ulises Joaquin (4.05 ERA) notched his seventh save in a scoreless ninth.

    The BlueClaws (7-14 in second half, 34-56 overall) will now host the Delmarva Shorebirds for a four-game series. Righty Jon Prosinski (2-2, 4.43 ERA) will toe the rubber in the opener on Thursday.

    Williamsport Crosscutters – Class A-Short Season

    The Crosscutters held on for a 7-5 victory over the Vermont Lake Monsters at Bowman Field in Williamsport, Pa.

    The offense surged to a 5-0 lead after two innings of play.

    The first two hitters in the lineup, right fielder Cord Sandberg (2-for-5 with a triple)and center fielder Jiandido Tromp (3-for-5 with a double), each scored two runs in the win.

    Designated hitter Aaron Brown (1-for-4) and left fielder Matt Shortall (2-for-4 with a double and a run scored) each took advantage of runners in scoring position and knocked in two runs.

    Right-handed starter David Whitehead (2-1, 2.10 ERA) benefitted from the offense and picked up the win. Whitehead was charged with four runs (three earned) on five hits in 5 1/3 innings.

    Riding a four-game win streak, the Crosscutters (15-11) will continue the series Thursday when righty Mitch Gueller (2-1, 3.15) makes the start.

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