Phillies Minor League Report: Jim Murphy carries IronPigs to victory
Here’s a rundown on how the Phillies’ minor league teams fared on Sunday, April 27:
Lehigh Valley IronPigs – Triple A
The IronPigs held off the Pawtucket Red Sox, 9-7, at Coca-Cola Park in Allentown, Pa.
Right-handed starter David Buchanan struggled in the top of the first and allowed two runs to put his team in an early hole.
The offense was up to the challenge as the IronPigs answered with a run in the second and a five-run third to take the lead for good. First baseman Jim Murphy provided big hits in both innings. In the second, he led off with a double and scored on left fielder Leandro Castro's sacrifice fly. In the third, Murphy delivered a two-run double and scored on a groundout.
Buchanan (3-0, 3.45 ERA) took the win, allowing four runs on seven hits while striking out five over 5 2/3 innings. He also served up a home run ball, hit two batters and unleashed a wild pitch.
Murphy finished 2-for-4 with two doubles, two runs scored, two RBI and a strikeout to raise his average to .256.
The win lifted the IronPigs' record to 11-12. Lehigh Valley will try for .500 when the series continues Monday with southpaw Greg Smith (2-0, 2.04 ERA) on the bump.
Reading Fightin Phils – Double A
The Fightin Phils were swept by the New Hampshire Fisher Cats with a 4-2 loss in the finale on Sunday at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium in Manchester, N.H.
In the top of the first, first baseman Brock Stassi reached on a one-out double and scored two batters later on right fielder Cam Perkins' RBI single for an early lead.
Right-handed starter Perci Garner (2-1, 3.13 ERA) got through the first two innings clean, but was tagged for three runs in the third to take the loss. He would give up five hits and two walks while striking out two.
The Fightin Phils' other run came in the fifth. Center fielder Aaron Altherr hit a lead-off single and came around to score on catcher Logan Moore's RBI double. It was Moore's first game with Reading.
The offense could only muster seven hits in the loss. Stassi (2-for-4 with a double and a run scored) and Altherr (3-for-4 with a double and a run scored) combined for five of those hits.
The Fightin Phils fell to 11-9 on the season. Reading will continue a road trip with a four-game series in Portland to take on the Sea Dogs. Lefty Jesse Biddle (2-2, 2.86 ERA) is slated to start the opener on Monday.
Clearwater Threshers – Class A-Advanced
The Threshers were also swept as they were edged by the Dunedin Blue Jays, 5-4, at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium in Dunedin, Fla.
Right-handed starter Miguel Nunez allowed four runs on six hits and three walks over 6 2/3 innings. Nunez didn't factor in the decision as he surrendered two different leads in the game.
The first Threshers' lead was built in the fourth. Trailing 1-0, third baseman Harold Martinez, first baseman Art Charles, right fielder Nick Ferdinand and catcher Gabriel Lino all singled with two outs for a 3-1 lead.
The lead didn't hold as the Threshers came to the plate in the top of the seventh with the score tied at three apiece. Lino struck again, this time with a solo home run to begin the frame for a 4-3 lead.
Nunez and reliever Lee Ridenhour were both charged with a run in the bottom of the seventh for the loss.
Four Threshers had multi-hit games: Martinez (2-for-4 with a run scored), Charles (3-for-4 with a double, a run scored and an RBI), Lino (2-for-4 with a home run, a run scored and two RBI) and designated hitter Willie Carmona (2-for-4 with a strikeout).
The loss dropped the Threshers to a Florida State League-worst 5-18 on the season. Clearwater will begin a three-game home series with the Brevard County Manatees on Monday. Righty Jeb Stefan (1-1, 6.75 ERA) will get the ball for the opener.
Lakewood BlueClaws – Class A
The BlueClaws held on for a 6-5 victory over the Savannah Sand Gnats at FirstEnergy Park in Lakewood Township, N.J.
Shortstop J.P. Crawford and first baseman Wilmer Oberto hit solo home runs in the bottom of the first for a quick 2-0 lead.
The BlueClaws used a four-run third to stretch the lead. Crawford drew a leadoff walk and center fielder Carlos Tocci followed with a single to start the threat. Back-to-back walks by right fielder Dylan Cozens and Oberto pushed one run across the plate. Designated hitter Samuel Hiciano lifted a sacrifice fly and second baseman Andew Pullin capped the inning with a two-run single.
That's all the offense Lakewood could muster as only one of its five hits in the game came after the third inning.
Right-handed starter Tyler Viza (2-2, 3.72 ERA) earned the win for his six-inning outing. He was charged with two runs on six hits and a walk while striking out one.
Crawford was the stand-out player for the BlueClaws as he reached base three times. He went 1-for-2 with a home run, two runs scored, an RBI, two walks and a strikeout to raise his average to .288. However, Crawford was caught stealing and picked off of first base.
The BlueClaws improved to 7-16. Lakewood will be idle on Monday.