Phillies Minor League Report: Williamsport third baseman Zach Green hits two homers during win
Here's how the Phillies minor-league teams fared on Friday, August 2:
Lehigh Valley IronPigs – Triple A
A late scoring barrage contributed to a 9-5 loss for the IronPigs to the Rochester Red Wings at Coca-Cola Park in Allentown Thursday.
The IronPigs went into the top of the fifth inning with a slim 1-0 advantage thanks to a sacrifice fly from third baseman Tyler Henson in the bottom of the second.
The Red Wings then exploded to nine runs during the last four innings to earn a four-game split with the IronPigs.
The Red Wings plated two runs in both the fifth and sixth innings off Lehigh Valley starter Tom Cochran.
Cochran was taken out after 5 1/3 innings after he allowed four runs on six hits. He also walked two batters and recorded only one strikeout.
Although the Red Wings surged ahead during the fifth and sixth innings, the score was still a manageable 4-1 for the IronPigs.
But relief pitchers Jay Johnson and Phillippe Aumont surrendered the next three runs between them and essentially put the game out of reach at 7-1 after the seventh.
Rochester’s final two runs came off Mike MacDougal in the top of the ninth.
As a staff, the Lehigh Valley pitchers allowed 12 hits and the Red Wings went 7-for-20 with runners in scoring position.
Cochran took the loss, which dropped his record to 3-6 on the season.
The IronPigs plated their final two runs during a minor rally attempt in the bottom of the ninth. Henson was responsible for both of those runs, but in a much more grandiose fashion this time around as he hit a two-run homer.
Henson finished the game 2-for-3. The home run in the ninth was his fourth of the season.
The IronPigs as a team recorded 14 hits against the Rochester pitching staff, but failed to bring runners home with any consistency. The IronPigs went 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position.
Both designated hitter Steve Susdorf and second baseman Pete Orr went 3-for-4 from the plate and first baseman Cody Overbeck went 2-for-4.
After splitting a four-game set with the Red Wings, the IronPigs travel to Moosic, Pa. for a quick two-game series against the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders at PNC Field.
Saturday’s contest is scheduled to begin at 7:05 p.m. with Tyler Cloyd (3-8, 5.77 ERA) taking the mound for the IronPigs.
Reading Fightin Phils – Double A
While the national media spotlight was on New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, for Phillies fans, Friday marked another shaky start for pitcher Jesse Biddle.
Biddle surrendered three runs on five hits during a 6-2 loss to the Trenton Thunder in the series opener at Arm & Hammer Park in Trenton, N.J.
Biddle was taken off the mound after five innings of work where he gave up two homers with one being off the bat of Rodriguez. Biddle took yet another loss, which put his record at 4-12 on the season.
On a positive note, Biddle did record six strikeouts, including fanning Rodriguez once.
The Reading offense had a rough night as well Friday. The Fightin Phils recorded only five hits against the Trenton pitching staff.
The Fightin Phils drew first blood, however, in the top of the first inning. Second baseman Matt Tolbert led off the game with a double to left field.
Tolbert was the only Fightin Phil to record multiple hits Friday as he went 2-for-4 with a double.
Right fielder Zach Collier followed Tolbert with single to right field that put runners on the corners.
After Collier stole second base, center fielder Albert Cartwright hit a sacrifice fly to right that plated Tolbert.
Biddle held the Thunder off the scoreboard until the bottom of the third when Rodriguez hit a two-run homer to give the Thunder a 2-1 lead.
The Fightin Phils tied the game during the top of the fourth courtesy of a two-out RBI-single from left fielder Kelly Dugan.
The Thunder regained the lead with a solo home run from designated hitter Kyle Roller in the bottom half of the inning.
Austin Wright threw a scoreless inning in the sixth in relief of Biddle, but was taken out in favor of Hector Neris before the seventh. Neris proceeded to surrender three runs on four runs during the frame.
The Fightin Phils will look to bounce back against the Thunder when they square off for the second of the four-game set at 7:05 p.m. Saturday.
Brody Colvin (3-2, 6.39 ERA) will take the mound for Reading.
Clearwater Threshers – Class A-Advanced
Despite recording eight hits, the Threshers were shut out by the St. Lucie Mets, 4-0, at Tradition Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla.
The loss was Clearwater’s third in a row as they only had more than one baserunner in the same inning once in the entire game.
The Clearwater pitching staff did what it could to hold off the Mets. Starter Severino Gonzalez kept the Mets off the scoreboard for the first four innings.
He finally gave up a run during the bottom of the fifth and pitched one more inning before his night was done.
Gonzalez surrendered one run on seven hits and struck out six batters. Because of the lack offense, however, he was dealt the loss, which put him at 2-4 on the year.
The other three St. Lucie runs came during the bottom of the eighth off of relief pitcher Colton Murray.
Second baseman Carlos Alonso and center fielder Aaron Altherr both led the Threshers from the plate as they finished 2-for-4.
Alonso and first baseman Brock Stassi recorded the only extra-base hits for the Threshers. Both were doubles.
The offensive struggles are one of the main reasons for the Threshers’ three-game losing streak. The Threshers have not scored more than five runs in any of their three consecutive losses.
The Threshers hope to improve upon Friday’s performance when they face the Mets at 8:30 p.m. Saturday. Ethan Stewart (0-4, 7.07 ERA) will get the ball for the Threshers.
Lakewood BlueClaws – Class A
The BlueClaws losing to the West Virginia Power has become routine during the 2013 season, but Friday’s contest wasn’t even close.
The BlueClaws were throttled by the Power, 10-1, at Appalachian Power Park in Charleston, W. Va.
The loss dropped the BlueClaws to 3-15 against the Power this season.
In their 18 meetings with the Power this season, the BlueClaws have struggled mightily to plate runs against their pitching staff.
The BlueClaws have scored more than five runs against the Power only four times. In those games they are 2-2. The BlueClaws actually won a game against the Power where they scored less than five runs.
The Power have held the BlueClaws to two runs or fewer nine times, which includes two shutouts. The BlueClaws are predictably 0-9 during those contests.
Lakewood’s lone run Friday came by virtue of an RBI-groundout from third baseman Mitch Walding.
The pitching staff for Lakewood was every bit as bad as its offense Friday. Starter Jeb Stefan surrendered five runs (four earned) on seven hits in only four innings on the mound.
Stefan was given the loss, which dropped his record to 3-6.
Relievers Geoff Broussard and Kevin Walter gave up five runs between them on a combined five hits.
The BlueClaws pitching staff recorded three strikeouts — all of which came from Stefan.
Two bright spots on the day were first baseman Art Charles and designated hitter Willie Carmona who both went 2-for-4 and registered one double apiece.
The BlueClaws will have to play the Power at least two more times in this four-game series starting at 7:05 p.m. Saturday.
Ramon Oviedo (1-0, 4.50 ERA) will be called upon to start for the BlueClaws.
Williamsport Crosscutters – Class A-Short Season
Two home runs from third baseman Zach Green lifted the Crosscutters to a 7-3 victory over the Staten Island Yankees at Bowman Field in Williamsport Friday.
Green finished his big day 3-for-4 with four RBI and increased his home run total to eight during the 2013 season.
Green’s first homer came with one on and two out in the bottom of the first inning. He hit a bomb over the right-field wall that gave the Crosscutters a lead they did not relinquish throughout the contest.
The Yankees cut into their deficit with a run during the top of the second. Green struck again, however, in the bottom of the third with another two-out, two-run homer that gave the Crosscutters a 4-1 advantage.
The Crosscutters plated runs during the sixth, seventh and eighth innings, including a solo homer from right fielder Samuel Hiciano, and coasted to a series-opening victory.
The Crosscutters recorded 10 hits as a team Friday. Designated hitter Logan Pierce joined Green with a multi-hit game as he went 2-for-4.
The Williamsport pitching staff certainly held up its end of the bargain against the Yankees as it allowed a combined six hits between four pitchers.
Starter Shane Martin gave up one run on only two hits during his five innings of work. Martin’s performance earned him his third win of the season.
The Crosscutters will look to take two of three from the Yankees at 7:05 p.m. Saturday when they send out Mitch Gueller (3-4, 5.63) to start.