Lehigh Valley’s last effort at the plate was dashed and Reading busted out with 12 runs on 13 hits, while single-A clubs Clearwater and Williamsport had contrasting nights.
Here’s a rundown of the Phillies’ farm system for Wednesday…
INTERNATIONAL LEAGUE (AAA)
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 5, Lehigh Valley 3: A ninth-inning comeback for the IronPigs (41-30) was erased by a walk-off homer in the middle game of the series.
Trailing 3-2 with two outs, Lehigh Valley rallied to tie the game on a single then an RBI double from RF Danny Ortiz (1-for-4). But the RailRiders (34-36) had two-out magic of their own in the home half, as Zack Zehner hit a two-run shot to end the game.
LHP Zac Curtis (L, 2-2) allowed the home run, striking out the first two batters he faced before a walk.
The IronPigs had the first lead of the night, 2-0 in the fourth inning after back-to-back homers from 1B Joey Meneses (2-for-4) and 2B Trevor Plouffe (1-for-4). That score would hold until the seventh when starter Ben Lively (6 2-3 IP) allowed a three-run shot.
It was the second of only two hits allowed by Lively, who also struck out seven and walked four.
The teams play the rubber match of the series Thursday at 7:05 p.m.
EASTERN LEAGUE (AA)
Reading 12, Portland 3: After giving up an early advantage, the Fightin Phils (30-40) put up 10 runs over two middle innings for their fourth straight win.
Reading went ahead 2-0 in the second inning, but the Sea Dogs (26-44) responded with an RBI double and two-run homer for a 3-2 lead in the third.
The bats came alive again for the Fightins in the fifth. RBI singles from CF Jan Hernandez and 1B Darick Hall (2-run) put the visitors back in front 5-3, and three more came in on a two run-triple from 3B Zach Green and single from LF Cornelius Randolph.
An inning later, the contest was put well out of reach with a grand slam off the bat of DH Austin Listi — his first home run at double A. Listi is 4-for-11 with six RBI in three games since being called up from Clearwater (A).
RH Harold Arauz (W, 4-4) went six innings with the three early runs allowed on six hits. He had six strikeouts.
FLORIDA STATE LEAGUE (A ADV)
Bradenton 9, Clearwater 1: LH Nick Fanti was tagged for a season-worst eight earned in 1 1-3 innings as the Threshers (32-36) dropped the series rubber match.
The Marauders (35-30) chased Fanti (L, 3-3) after one out in the second with all eight runs and five hits allowed in the inning. Another run was added on a solo homer off RH Felix Paulino.
The lone run for Clearwater came on SS Jose Gomez’s RBI groundout.
Clearwater returns home Thursday at 7 p.m. for the four-game series opener against Dunedin, which finished 31-37 in the league’s first half.
SOUTH ATLANTIC LEAGUE (A)
Lakewood returns to action Thursday at 7:05 p.m. against Columbia after being off since Monday for the All-Star break.
NY-PENN LEAGUE (A SHORT)
Williamsport 2, Auburn 0: Two runs in the eighth proved the only scoring and enough for the Crosscutters (4-2) to secure the sweep.
C Rafael Marchan (2-for-4) singled home a run with one away in the inning, then after a fly out, LF Ben Pelletier (2-for-4) brought him in on a double.
LH Abdallah Aris picked up the win (1-0) in three relief innings of LH Jhordany Mezquita, who was locked in a pitcher’s duel. The 20-year-old matched his starting Doubledays (2-4) counterpart Malvin Pena with five shutout innings, but allowed one less hit (five). Mezquita struck out six and walked none.
Williamsport begins its first road trip Thursday at 7:05 p.m. with the opener of three against Batavia (2-4).
GULF COAST LEAGUE
GCL Phillies East 5, GCL Yankees East 0: RH Carlos Francisco tossed five scoreless innings and combined with three relievers for the Phillies’ (2-0) shutout.
Francisco, an April 2017 free-agent signee, allowed four hits, struck out six, and walked two in his first league appearance (W, 1-0).
C Carlos Oropeza, 19, was a game-best 3-for-3 with an RBI and two runs.
GCL Blue Jays 3, GCL Phillies West 2: RHP Leonel Aponte (L, 0-1) allowed three runs (one earned) in 2-3 inning of relief as the Phillies could not rally back in their first game.
The 18-year-old gave up two hits, while walking two and striking out one after coming in for fellow 18-year-old righthander Ben Brown, who tossed five innings of two-hit ball in the start.