Here's how the Phillies' minor league teams fared on Saturday, July 5:
Lehigh Valley IronPigs – Triple A
A fielding error allowed center fielder Leandro Castro cross the plate in the top of the 16th inning to help IronPigs edge the Rochester Red Wings, 9-8, during a marathon affair Saturday at Frontier Field in Rochester N.Y.
With the game tied 8-8 in the 16th inning, Rochester third baseman Pedro Florimon committed a fielding error that allowed Lehigh Valley third baseman Maikel Franco to reach first base, but more importantly, it also gave up what turned out to be the winning run.
Is rookie Ken Giles ready to take over for Jonathan Papelbon as the Phillies’ closer?
Lehigh Valley relief pitcher Hector Neris took the mound in the bottom half of the frame and retired the Red Wings in order to secure the victory. The win was the IronPigs’ fourth in their last five games.
Franco and Castro both posted great outings from the plate, as they both went 3-for-8. Franco drove three runs for the second game in a row while Castro accounted for one RBI.
But the most production came from first baseman Russ Cranzler, who went 4-for-7 with two solo homers. The first came during the fifth inning while the second came during the 14th. He now has five on the season.
Both the IronPigs and the Red Wings used seven pitchers during the 16-inning contest. Lehigh Valley starter Sean O’Sullivan tossed six innings where he struck out seven batters, but allowed four runs (one earned) on five hits.
O’Sullivan was in position to get the win, but Luis Garcia gave up the game-tying run during the ninth, which sent the game into extras. Garcia was handed his second blown save of the year as a result.
Jeremy Horst earned the win after pitching four innings where he coughed up only one run on three hits and struck out four batters.
After splitting a quick two-game set with the Red Wings, the IronPigs will travel to Indianapolis, Ind. to open a four-game series with the Indianapolis Indians at Victory Field.
First pitch Sunday is set for 6:05 p.m. as Brad Lincoln (4-3, 4.14 ERA) is scheduled to start for Lehigh Valley.
Reading Fightin Phils – Double A
The Fightin Phils coughed up an early four-run lead on their way to dropping their fifth game in row, 5-4, to the Richmond Flying Squirrels at The Diamond in Richmond, Va.
Reading gained the four-run advantage thanks to RBI hits from left fielder Kelly Dugan, first baseman Brock Stassi and catcher Raywilly Gomez.
Unfortunately for the Fightin Phils, starting pitcher Chris Bootcheck allowed four runs during the bottom of the third and another during the fifth.
Bootcheck’s first start with Reading ended in a loss after giving up five runs on nine hits in five innings of work.
Dugan led the Fightin Phils in hitting by going 2-for-4 with two RBI. Stassi’s RBI during the third now gives him 33 on the season.
The Fightin Phils will look to snap their current losing streak when they face the Flying Squirrels again at 1:35 p.m. Sunday. Severino Gonzalez (4-9, 4.91 ERA) will start for Reading.
Clearwater Threshers – Class A-Advanced
The Threshers were scheduled to open a three-game series with the Brevard County Manatees, but the game was postponed due to rain at Space Coast Stadium in Melbourne, Fla.
The game has been rescheduled to Sunday as apart of a doubleheader that will begin at 4:05 p.m. Mark Leiter (0-0, 3.00 ERA) is still scheduled to make his second Clearwater start during Game 1 while Miguel Nunez (2-6, 6.22 ERA) will take the mound for Game 2.
Lakewood BlueClaws – Class A
A strong performance from Delmarva pitcher Hunter Harvey stifled the BlueClaws, as they fell to the Shorebirds again Saturday, 6-3, at Perdue Stadium in Salisbury, Md.
Harvey struck out eight BlueClaws and allowed only two runs (one earned) on five hits during six innings.
While Harvey was dealing, Lakewood starter Jon Prosinski had a little bit rougher of an outing. Prosinski allowed five runs (four earned) on seven hits during 5.2 innings on the mound. He was handed the loss, which dropped him to 2-2 on the season.
Center fielder Carlos Tocci and third baseman Mitch Walding led the way offensively for Lakewood by going 2-for-5 and 2-for-4 respectively. Both of their hits went for doubles.
The BlueClaws’ main issue from the plate was driving home baserunners, as they finished 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position and left 10 runners stranded.
The BlueClaws will try to avoid being swept by the Shorebirds at 5:05 p.m. Sunday. Julio Reyes (1-3, 4.33 ERA) will start for Lakewood.
Williamsport Crosscutters – Class A-Short Season
An RBI-single from Auburn’s Brian Langlois during the top of the ninth was the difference during the Crosscutters 2-1 loss to the Doubledays Saturday at Susquehanna Bank Park at Bowman Field.
The loss came despite a quality outing from starting pitcher Alejandro Arteaga, who allowed one run on five hits during seven innings of work.
Calvin Rayburn was handed his first loss of the season after coughing up the game-winning run during the ninth.
The Crosscutters’ offense was mostly quiet Saturday, as they only recorded seven total hits. Three of those hits came courtesy of shortstop Emmanuel Marrero. Only four Crosscutters recorded hits during the game.
The Crosscutters have a chance to split their four-game series with the Doubledays at 5:05 p.m. Sunday. Austen Williams will make his first start with the Crosscutters.
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