Author Archive

Back Home With Bucs

Young starting pitchers continue to keep the Phillies in games but the offense continues to struggle. It happened again yesterday as the Nationals ended the four-game series with their third straight win, 3-2.

Adam Morgan pitched well once again and once again was tagged with the loss even though he gave up only two runs on three hits and two walks in six innings. Pitching carefully, he walked Bryce Harper to start the seventh. Edubray Ramos replaced Morgan and promptly gave up a game-tying double that broke a 1-1 tie. A passed ball accounted for the second run of the inning.

The offense out-hit the Nats, 7-4. Three times the Phillies grounded into double plays. Their lone runs came on solo homers by Tommy Joseph and Freddy Galvis. Lack of run support puts a lot of pressure on the pitchers not to make a mistake.

Alec Asher-Jake Thompson-Jerad Eickhoff and Morgan combined for 24.1 innings, 15 hits, four runs, six walks and 12 strikeouts in the series. Offensively, Phillies bats produced 10 total runs, nine coming via the long ball and one on an RBI single by Galvis in the fifth inning on Friday night.
Since returning from AAA on August 14, Morgan has pitched well, a 3.86 ERA after six starts during which he’s held the enemy to two or fewer runs five times. What has he got to show for it? 1 win, 2 no decisions, 3 losses.

Phil-Ins
Of Joseph’s 18 homers, half have tied the game, including yesterday . . . Galvis has gone 45 straight games without an error and has one error the second half . . . His homer was #17. Only Jimmy Rollins hit more among Phillies shortstops, including 30 in his 2007 MVP season . . . Jeremy Hellickson (10-9), tonight’s starter, is looking for 1st win since August 20, It is the first of a four-game series with the Bucs.

5 Things
Five things to know about the Pirates….
**Fresh from losing last 3 of a 4-game series vs. the Reds; 11th loss in the last 13 games.
**Won 2 of 3 vs. Phillies in PNC in July; 2-2 in 4-game series at CBP a year ago.
**Team batting average (.258) ranks 5th in NL; 4.16 ERA is 8th. UPDATE
**Have scored 628 runs, given up 648. UPDATE
**46-43 record at All-Star Game.

Minor League Report

Reading Fightin Phils
Manager Dusty Wathan’s last comment on his last game report after Saturday night’s loss: “Great year and proud to be in charge of this group of men!!!”

Lakewood BlueClaws, South Atlantic League North Division champions.

csgmh5ewgaaevys-1

After getting to Rome the BlueClaws worked out yesterday afternoon at State Mutual Stadium. The SAL is divided into two 7-team divisions, North and South. Lakewood (North) and Rome Braves (South) each finished sixth the first half, won the second half and Division Series. The two teams did not meet during the regular season.

Overall
Lakewood was 74-65 . . . 39-30 at home . . . 35-35 on the road . . . Team average (.268), ranked second . . . Team ERA (3.53), fifth.

Rome, 70-69 . . . 30-40 at home . . . 40-29 on the road . . . Team average (.252), fourth . . . Team ERA (3.69), ninth . . . Batting leader: 2B Luke Dykstra (.304), Lenny Dykstra’s son.

Championship Series, best of 5
Game 1, 7:05 tonight, Lakewood (Franklyn Kilome, 5-8, 3.85) at Rome
Game 2, Tuesday, September 13, 7:05 p.m., Lakewood at Rome
Game 3, Thursday, September 15, 7:05 p.m., Rome at Lakewood
Game 4, Friday, September 16, 7:05 p.m., Rome at Lakewood*
Game 5, Saturday, September 17, 7:05 p.m. Rome at Lakewood*
*If necessary

This Date
September 12, 1972

1972-schmidt-debut
22-year-old Mike Schmidt, wearing #22, makes his big league debut, taking over for Don Money at third base in the top of the second inning during a 4-3 loss to the New York Mets at Veterans Stadium before a sparse crowd of 5,057.

An inning later he strikes out against RHP Jim McAndrew in his first at-bat. In the fifth inning, he gets his first hit, a ground ball single to left. He finishes the day, 1-for-3 with a walk.

Four days later, he hits his first home run against Montreal LHP Balor Moore, also at the Vet. The three-run homer in the seventh inning lifts the Phillies to a 3-1 win.

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

Reading Ousted From Playoffs

Despite another strong outing by a young starting pitcher the Phillies lost another game because another night of no offense. Oh, you’ve read this before?

Jared Eickhoff tossed six scoreless innings to match Max Scherzer but in the end, the Phillies lost, 3-0, when left-handed hitter Bryce Harper hit a three-run homer off lefty reliever Patrick Schuster with one out in the eighth. It was the 10th time the Phillies failed to score, five of those coming in the last 18 games.

Alec Asher, Jake Thompson and Eickhoff, the three young arms acquired last summer in the Cole Hamels trade, each pitched effectively over the first three games of this series. Combined they allowed two runs in 17.1 innings. That’s a plus. With overworked relievers Edubray Ramos, Hector Neris and Jeanmar Gomez not available the last two days, the Nationals won both games against the Phillies bullpen.

Phil-Ins
Cameron Rupp’s 15 homers makes him the third Phillies catcher since 1997 to hit that many, Mike Lieberthal (five times) and Carlos Ruiz (2012). Lieberthal holds the club record (31, 1999) . . . Phils are 26-36 against teams in their own division. They began the season 13-8 . . . Phillies are 11-11 on Sundays. In case you aren’t aware today is the 11th day of this month.

Roster Additions
ICYMI: LF Cody Asche, RHS Phil Klein, RHR Luis Garcia and LHR Joely Rodriguez joined the Phillies yesterday afternoon following the end of Lehigh Valley’s season the night before. To make room for Rodriguez on the 40-man roster, INF Taylor Featherson was designated for assignment.

CF Roman Quinn and  C Jorge Alfaro  were recalled from Reading this morning, giving the Phillies 36 players.

New Face

00-rodriguez
The 24-year-old Rodriquez was originally signed by the Pirates out of the Dominican Republic in 2009 and acquired by the Phillies in a trade for Antonio Bastardo, 12/10/14 . . . A starter and occasional reliever, he was moved to the bullpen full time this season . . . Combined at Clearwater-Reading-Lehigh Valley he was 7-0, 2.35 ERA in 53 G, 76.2 IP, 65 H, 23 BB, 69 SO, 1.15 WHIP. Allowed 3 R in last 14.2 IP, 9 H, 3 BB, 14 SO in AAA . . . He’s wearing #63.

MLB Note
ESPN’s Peter Gammons on twitter late Friday night: “Giants/D’Backs used 15 relievers for 3 or fewer outs. September baseball.”

SF won the game in 11 innings, 7-6, but Arizona had the edge in pitchers used, 12-8.

Minor League Report
Reading Fightin’ Phils, Eastern League Eastern Division Champions.

Errors and two-out runs cost the Reading Fightin Phils as they lost to the Trenton Thunder, 3-2, ending their season. Trenton, which finished second to Reading in the season, took the semi-final playoff round, 3-1. The two teams played eight straight games against each other as the regular season’s final series was four games in Trenton, a 2-2 split.

1B Dante Bichette Jr. homered in T2, a throwing error by 3B Harold Martinez led to a T3 run and another throwing error, this one by SS KC Serna, paved the way for Trenton’s third run T5. Each run came with two out.

RBI singles by DH Jake Fox (B2) and Christian Marrero (B7) accounted for Reading’s run. With RISP, Reading was 1-9. Four Trenton pitchers combined for 14 strikeouts.

Losing pitcher: Tyler Viza, 6-4-3-1-2-5. Reading’s third pitcher, Victor Arano, struck out all four hitters he faced.

Trenton is a farm team of the Yankees as is Scranton/Wilkes-Barre which eliminated Lehigh Valley in the AAA playoffs on Friday night.

Lakewood BlueClaws, South Atlantic League North Division champions.

They will spend today riding a bus from New Jersey to Georgia where they begin the Championship Series against the Rome Braves on Monday. Rome won the Southern Division playoff over Charleston last night, 2 games to 1.

Lakewood has been in three Championship Series and won each time, 2006, 2009, 2010.

Northern Division Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-3
Game 1, Lakewood 6, Hagerstown 1
Game 2, Lakewood 5, Hagerstown 2

Southern Division Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-3
Game 1, Rome 3, Charleston 1
Game 2, Charleston 4, Rome 3
Game 3, Rome 4, Charleston 1

Championship Series, best-of-5
Game 1, Monday, September 12, 7:05 p.m., Lakewood at Rome
Game 2, Tuesday, September 13, 7:05 p.m., Lakewood at Rome
Game 3, Thursday, September 15, 7:05 p.m., Rome at Lakewood
Game 4, Friday, September 16, 7:05 p.m., Rome at Lakewood*
Game 5, Saturday, September 17, 7:05 p.m. Rome at Lakewood*
*If necessary

This Date
September 11, 1942
CF Edwin Freed ties the NL record for most hits in first MLB game: four (single, two doubles, triple). Cincinnati wins, 8-5, at Shibe Park. Freed appeared in 12 more games that September, finishing big league career with 10 total hits.

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

Alfaro’s Big Night

Jake Thompson turned in this third straight strong start but didn’t get the loss this time as the Nationals edged the Phillies 5-4 on Trea Turner’s walk-off homer with two out in the last of the ninth off Frank Hermann.

Thompson left after 5.1 innings trailing, 2-1. In his last three starts he has allowed four runs over 19.1 innings, a 2.33 ERA. His run support while he’s in those three games is a microscopic one run. He tried to help his own cause with double leading off the fifth, his first extra base hit as a pro. Not surprising, he never got beyond third base.

Turner’s two-run homer (B7) off Colton Murray upped the Nats’ lead to 4-1. Cameron Rupp saved Thompson from getting a loss with a towering three-run homer (T8) way over the Phillies bullpen in left center. It also prevented Tanner Roark from going 4-0 against the Phillies this season.

Phil-Ins
The Phillies usual three relievers at the back end of the game, Edubray Ramos, Hector Neris and Jeanmar Gomez, were given the night off because of their heavy workload recently . . . The Nationals have a 37-player roster, which includes 15 relievers. It is called September baseball . . . Max Scherzer, 7-1, lifetime against the Phillies tonight.

Minor League Report
Paul Owens Award Winners.

owens-award
All three will be honored pre-game when the White Sox play at Citizens Bank Park on September 20. Each had a massive season this year.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs, International League North Division. Wildcard winner.

Scranton/Wilkes Barre swept the Lehigh Valley IronPigs in three straight to advance to the league’s Governor Cup Championship Series, 11-3, in PNC Park.

Phil Klein, who had allowed 11 earned runs in 65.1 innings during the season was troughed up for 10 runs (eight earned) in 3 innings. Because rain, the game didn’t start until 8:46 and SWB scored 3 in B1, two on wild pitches. The RailRiders blew the game open with eight in B4. Lehigh Valley scored its’ first run of the series in T4, ending a streak of 21 consecutive scoreless innings. 2B Jesmuel Valentin drove in all of LV’s runs with two hits.

After the game, Lehigh Valley’s bus headed south on the northeast extension of the Pennsylvania Turnpike for Allentown. Most of the players will clear out their lockers today and head back to their respective homes. A few will join the Phillies in Washington.

Reading Fightin’ Phils, Eastern League Eastern Division Champions.

Down 2-0 to Trenton in the best-of-5 semi-final playoffs, the Fightin Phils returned home to the friendly confines of FirstEnergy Stadium where they were 51-20 during the series.

cr9ouq6viamcdb8

C Jorge Alfaro’s four hits led a 16-hit attack that included four doubles and four homers. In the two losses in Trenton, the Fightins had three extra base hits. The 23-year old Alfaro had two singles and a pair of home runs, scored three and drove in three.

1B Rhys Hoskins and 3B Harold Martinez hit the other homers. CF Roman Quinn scored twice giving him five in the series. RF Dylan Cozens had a single, double, run, RBI and walk.

21-year-old LH Elniery Garcia, making his AA debut, was the winner, 6-7-3-2-1-4. He also hit a batter, picked off a runner at first and committed an error on another pick-off attempt.

Division Series, best-of-5
Game 1, Trenton 3, Reading 2
Game 2, Trenton 9, Reading 4
Game 3, Reading 14, Trenton 5
Game 4, 7:05 tonight, Trenton (Caleb Smith, 3-5, 3.96) at Reading (Tyler Viza, 4-6, 4.69)
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 6:05 p.m., Trenton (Kyle Haynes, 1-3, 7.39) at Reading (John Richy, 4-4, 5.11)*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5
September 13-17

Lakewood BlueClaws, South Atlantic League North Division. 2nd-half champions.

blue-claws

The BlueClaws advanced to the Championship Series by sweeping Hagerstown in two straight games in the best-of-3 semi-final round, 5-2. Last time Lakewood was in the championship round was 2010.

1B Wilson Garcia got Lakewood off to a quick start with a two-run double T1. 3B Damek Tomscha iced the game with a two-run triple in T7 after the Suns had crept back in the game, down 3-2 in B5. Tomscha had two walks and was hit by pitch in his four plate appearances. Lead-off hitter, RF Mark Laird had four hits and a walk, scored three times and stole a base.

Jose Taveras was the winner, 7-7-2-2-0-4. Sutter McLoughlin pitched a scoreless ninth, one strikeout, for the save.

Lakewood began its’ season, 1-9. On May 24, the BlueClaws were 0-11 against Hagerstown which won the first half while the BlueClaws finished sixth. Lakewood (44-25) won the second half by five games over the Suns.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-3
Game 1, Lakewood 6, Hagerstown 1
Game 2, Lakewood 5, Hagerstown 2

Championship Series, best-of-5
Starts Monday in either Rome, GA (ATL) or Charleston, SC (NYY). Deciding game will be played tonight in Charleston.

Lakewood will host Game 3, and if necessary Games 4 and 5.

This Date
September 10, 2009
Matt Stairs ties club record for most pinch-hit home runs in a season with five,
connecting with the bases loaded, but Phillies lose in Washington, 8-7.

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

(Phillies Insider will be posted seven days a week until the minor league playoffs end).

Asher Gets 1st W

cr4kl4pusaaei6m

Alec Asher won his first major league game by keeping the Nationals off the scoreboard for six innings in the Phillies 4-1 victory last night in DC. The 24-year-old was 0-6 before making his first start this season. He allowed two hits, walked one and struck out none in throwing 75 pitches, 55 for strikes. 14 of his outs were fly balls.

All the Phillies runs came in the third inning, a solo homer by Peter Bourjos off the left field foul pole and a three-run blast to left center by Ryan Howard. It was Howard’s 14th homer in Nationals Park, second only in an enemy yard to the 22 he’s hit in Turner Field. It was career #378, tying Matt Williams for 72nd place on the all-time list.

Hector Neris allowed the run in the eighth while Jeanmar Gomez, making his seventh appearance in the last nine games, recorded his 36th save.

Phil-Ins
On April 28, the Phillies completed a three-game sweep in Nationals Park. Since then the Nationals had defeated the Phillies nine straight times . . . Phillies are 49-21 when scoring four or more runs; 14-56, three runs or less . . . So, the Phillies face Tanner Roark, Max Scherzer and Gio Gonzalez the next three days. Combined, they are 7-1, 1.53 ERA against the Phillies this season, including three wins recently at Citizens Bank Park giving up a total of three runs. Law of averages has to be on the Phillies’ side.

Minor League Report
Two seasons ago, the Phillies farm system (six U. S.-based clubs) had winning percentage of .430, last in the majors. None of those teams reached the postseason. This season, .590 percentage which ranks as the best. Four of the six advanced to the postseason.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs, International League North Division. Wildcard winner.

For the second straight day, the IronPigs were shut out on four hits by Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, 7-0, giving the RailRiders a 2-0 lead in the best-of-5 semi-final playoff round. SWB ended the season on a seven-game winning streak. 34-year-old Phil Coke worked seven innings for the win, three hits, no walks and seven strikeouts. Losing pitcher: Anthony Vasquez, 4-6-4-4-2-2.

Series shifts to PNC Park where the RailRiders were 44-27, the best home record in the league.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-5
Game 1, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 2, Lehigh Valley 0
Game 2, SWB 7, LV 0
Game 3, tonight, 6:35, LV (RHP Phil Klein, 5-1, 1.52) at SWB (RHP Bryan Mitchell, 0-0, 1.00)
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 6:35 p.m., LV (David Buchanan, 10-9, 3.98) at SWB (Richard Bleier, 2-3, 3.72)*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 1:05 p.m., LV at SWB*
*If necessary

Governor Cup Championship, best-of-5.
September 13-17

Reading Fightin’ Phils, Eastern League Eastern Division Champions.

The Trenton Thunder took a 2-0 lead in the best-of-5 semi-final series with 9-4 win in Arm & Hammer Park. Five Reading pitchers gave up 12 hits and seven walks while striking out only two. Four of Trenton’s runs came on sacrifice flies.

Reading scored in the first inning but Trenton had 2-run innings in the third-fourth and fifth inning and put the game away with a three-run eighth. Losing pitcher: Ricardo Pinto, 3-6-4-4-2-2.

The Fightin Phils had nine hits, including a Dylan Cozens home run, and struck out 10 times. With RISP, 1-10. CF Ramon Quinn, 2-4, R, RBI, BB, SB. 2B Scott Kingery, 2-4.

Series shifts to Reading’s FirstEnergy Stadium. The Fightins had an unbelievable
51-20 record at home. Trenton played only one series there and was swept in three games in late May. Reading needs another sweep or their season is over. 21-year-old LF Elniery Garcia makes his AA debut tonight after a 12-4, 2.68 season with Clearwater.

Division Series, best-of-5
Game 1, Trenton 3, Reading 2
Game 2, Trenton 9, Reading 4
Game 3, tonight 7:05, Trenton (LHP Justus Sheffield, 0-0, 0.00) at Reading (Elniery Garcia, 0-0, 0.00)
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m., Trenton (Caleb Smith, 3-5, 3.96) at Reading (Tyler Viza, 4-6, 4.69)*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 6:05 p.m., Trenton at Reading*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5
September 13-17

Lakewood BlueClaws, South Atlantic League North Division. 2nd-half champions.

Series resumes tonight in Hagerstown’s Municipal Stadium. RHP Jose Taveras will start for the BlueClaws. The 22-year-old from the Dominican Republic led the league with 154 strikeouts and was second in WHIP (1.03). He won his final four decisions and is 5-2 on the road.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-3
Game 1, Lakewood 6, Hagerstown 1.
Game 2, Friday, Sept. 9, 7:05 p.m. Lakewood (RHP Jose Taveras, 8-8, 3.28) at Hagerstown (LHP Tyler Watson 1-1, 4.80)
Game 3, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m. Lakewood (Franklyn Kilome 5-8, 3.85) at Hagerstown (Joan Baez, 9-7, 3.94)*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5

This Date
September 9, 1997

ashburn-pioe
Just hours after broadcasting a Phillies game, Richie Ashburn dies in a New York hotel. Ashburn’s passing produces a huge outpouring of affection from friends and fans. Phillies win, 1-0, over the Mets. Ironically, as a player with the Phillies, he wore #1 and his final game was with the Mets.

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

(Phillies Insider will be posted seven days a week until the minor league playoffs end which may be soon).

Blanked Again

A broom for a sweep of the Marlins in Miami last night wasn’t needed as the Phillies fell, 6-0. Using bats instead of broom sticks, the Phillies offense managed four hits against Andrew Cashner and none off four Miami relievers. Cashner, 0-4 after for Miami after acquiring him in a trade, held them scoreless through 5.2 innings, striking out nine and throwing 103 pitches.

In the top of first the Phillies had two runners in scoring position. Neither runner moved. Once again the Phillies were hitless with RISP, 7 at-bats. But, that’s a broken record. As Pete Mackanin said after the game, “Back to no offense.”

The shutout was the ninth against the Phillies of which four have happened in the last 15 games.

Phil-Ins
First of four gams four days in Nationals Park is tonight . . . Nats have won nine straight against the Phillies, longest streak in Expos-Nationals franchise history and lead the season series, 11-4 . . . Phillies are 3-3 in DC. Last win, April 28, the sweep of a three-game series . . . 24-year-old RH Alex Asher will start for the Phillies. He was 0-6 a year ago, including a loss to Washington . . . Following Asher in the rotation are Jake Thompson and Jared Eickhoff. All three were acquired in the Cole Hamels trade last season.

5 Things
Five things to know about the Nationals:
**The Nationals have 37 players on their roster.
**Pitching staff is second in ERA (3.46) and strikeouts (1,267).
**Bullpen has allowed the fewest homers (49) in the majors.
**They have dominated the NL East (42-18).
**Five players have hit 20 or more home runs

Minor League Report

Lehigh Valley IronPigs, International League North Division. Wildcard winner.

Ben Lively walked one batter and SWB CF Mark Williams followed with a two-out home run in T8, giving the RailRiders a 2-0 win the first playoff game. Lively began by retiring 20 of the first 24 batters. Like their big league brothers in Miami, the IronPigs had just four hits and were 0-7 with RISP.

Lively’s line: 7.2-5-2-2-1-8. 1B Brock Stassi had half of LV’s hit total.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-5
Game 1, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 2, Lehigh Valley 0.
Game 2, tonight, 7:05 p.m., SWB (LHP Phil Coke, 5-3, 2.96) at LV (LHP Anthony Vasquez, 4-1, 2.64)
Game 3, Friday, Sept. 9, 6:35 p.m., LV (RHP Phil Klein, 5-1, 1.52) at SWB (RHP Brady Lail, 7-6, 5.07)
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 6:35 p.m., LV at SWB*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 1:05 p.m., LV at SWB*
*If necessary

Governor Cup Championship, best-of-5.
September 13-17

Reading Fightin’ Phils, Eastern League Eastern Division Champions.

Trenton edged Reading, 3-2, scoring the winning run (unearned) without a hit in B7. Mark Leiter Jr. pitched well but came out the loser. With one out 1B Dante Bichette Jr. drew a walk. Following a strikeout, Bichette advanced to second on a wild pitch and continued to third on a throwing error by C Jorge Alfaro. Bichette scored on another wild pitch.

Alfaro drove in Reading’s first run with a single T3, tying the score at 1-1. Two innings later RF Dylan Cozens doubled home a run to again tie the score. CF Roman Quinn scored both runs and stole a base. Reading offense was 2-10 with RISP, left 10 on base and struck out 13 times.

Leiter’s line: 7.5-5-3-2-2-10.

Division Series, best-of-5
Game 1, Trenton 3, Reading 2.
Game 2, Thursday, Sept. 8, 7:00 p.m. Reading (RHP Ricardo Pinto, 7-6, 4.10) at Trenton (RHP Will Carter, 1-3, 330)
Game 3, Friday, Sept. 9, 7:05 p.m. Trenton (LHP Justus Sheffield, 0-0, 0.00) at Reading (Elniery Garcia, 0-0, 0.00)
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m., Trenton at Reading*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 6:05 p.m., Trenton at Reading*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5
September 13-17

Lakewood BlueClaws, South Atlantic League North Division. 2nd-half champions.

3B Damek Tomscha’s two-run double broke a 1-1 tie in B5 sending the BlueClaws on their way to a 6-1 win over Hagerstown. SS Emmanuel Marrero’s RBI single had tied the game earlier in the same inning. Marrero led the 12-hit attack with three hits and two RBI.

Hagerstown scored a run with one out in T1, walk, wild pitch, hit batter and single. The Suns were limited to three hits the rest of the way by four Lakewood pitchers:
Alberto Tirado, 4-3-1-1-3-5; Grant Dyer(W), 3-1-0-0-1-2; Zach Morris, 1-0-0-0-0-2; Sutter McLoughlin, 1-0-0-0-0-2.

Lakewood is 16-4 all-time in postseason play. Series resumes Friday in Hagerstown’s Municipal Stadium.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-3
Game 1, Lakewood 6, Hagerstown 1.
Game 2, Friday, Sept. 9, 7:05 p.m. Lakewood (RHP Jose Taveras, 8-8, 3.28) at Hagerstown (LHP Tyler Watson 1-1, 4.80)
Game 3, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m. Lakewood at Hagerstown*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5

Gulf Coast League Phillies, (43-15), Northwest Division Champions; lost in Championship Series.

Scoring 3 times in T6, the Cardinals went on to defeat the Phillies, 4-2, at Bright Houses Field and win the Championship Series, 2-1. A hit batter, wild pitch, walk, 2 singles, 2 stolen bases and an error produced the 3 runs.

Danny Zardon’s 2-run single staked the Phillies to a lead in the first inning. After that the Phillies were scoreless on four singles.

Pitching lines: Kyle Young, 6-2-1-1-2-4; Luis Carrasco (L), 1-2-3-3-1-0; Jordan
Kurokawa, 2-0-0-0-0-0; Tyler Frohwirth, 1-0-0-0-2-0.

Championship Series, best-of-3
Game 1, Cardinals 4, Phillies 0.
Game 2, Phillies 3, Cardinals 2.
Game 3, Cardinals 4, Phillies 2

Players of the Week (August 29-Sept. 5)

enmanuel-garcia
OF Enmanuel Garcia, Williamsport… The 22-year-old batted .379 (11-29) with 4 doubles, 3 home runs, 9 RBI, 2 walks, a stolen base and an .828 slugging percentage in seven games. He recorded three multi-hit games. The Dominican Republic native was signed by the Phillies as an amateur free agent on April 2, 2013.

ben-lively
Ben Lively, Lehigh Valley… Lively, 24, made his final start of the season on September 2, tossing 6.0 no-hit, no-walk innings while striking out 10 batters, a season-high in triple-A. It was his 18th win of the season between Reading and Lehigh Valley, most in the minor leagues in 2016. The right-hander led the International League in WHIP (0.93) and opponents’ batting average (.196), was tied for first in wins (11) and ranked second in ERA (3.06). Lively was acquired from Cincinnati in exchange for Marlon Byrd and cash considerations on December 31, 2014.

Honors
Reading’s 1B Rhys Hoskins and RF Dylan Cozens named to Baseball America’s Minor League All-Star team.

Eastern League: Cozens, Most Valuable Player; Hoskins, Rookie of the Year; Dustin Wathan, Manager of the Year (second consecutive season).

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

(Phillies Insider will be posted seven days a week until the minor league playoffs end. Happy reading).

Morgan’s Spin Ends

crth38dueaaf8aj

Adam Morgan finally got that nine-game losing streak monkey off his back last night but it wasn’t easy. Wonder what was going through his mind as a 4-1 lead dwindled to 4-3 in the eighth and the Marlins put the winning runs on base in the ninth. Jeanmar Gomez struck out Dee Gordon and Morgan could relax.

Since returning to the big leagues on August 19, he’s had one dud out of five starts. A performance like that will play well as the Phillies look to build a pitching rotation for next year.

The lefty gave up one run on five hits in six innings. He walked none and struck out five in throwing 85 pitches.

Odubel Herrera looked like his self at the plate, single, triple and three runs scored. Cesar Hernandez added three hits from the leadoff spot with Tommy Joseph and Freddy Galvis, the 4-5 hole hitters, driving in two runs each.

Phil-Ins
Hector Neris gave up the two eighth-inning runs, his first multiple-run inning since June 15 . . . Phillies had gone nine 10 straight games with nine hits or less until getting 10 last night . . . Morgan was backed by a great running catch by Herrera and Peter Bourjos throwing out a runner trying to go from first to third . . . Two straight wins for the first time since 4 in a row August 10, 12-13-14 . . . Galvis leads all NL shortstops with a .989 fielding percentage and just six errors . . . Alex Asher will pitch Thursday night in Washington.

Minor League Report
Players of Month (August)

00-aug-honors

Lehigh Valley IronPigs, International League North Division. Wildcard winner.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-5
Game 1, tonight, 7:05–Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (LH Jordan Montgomery 5-1, 0.97) at Lehigh Valley (Ben Lively, 11-5, 3.05)
Game 2, Thursday, Sept. 8, 7:05 p.m., SWB (LH Phil Coke, 5-3, 2.96) at LV (Anthony Vasquez, 4-1, 2.64)
Game 3, Friday, Sept. 9, 6:35 p.m., LV (Phil Klein, 5-1, 1.52) at SWB
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 6:35 p.m., LV at SWB*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 1:05 p.m., LV at SWB*
*If necessary

Governor Cup Championship, best-of-5.
September 13-17

Lehigh Valley: Finished with overall second-best record to SWB, 84-58 . . . 42-30 at Coca-Cola Park . . . 43-28 on the road . . . 7-3 in final 10 games . . . Set club record in home runs (122) . . . Second in league in ERA (3.12), led in WHIP (1.15).

Scranton/Wilkes Barre RailRiders (NYY): Finished 91-52, 6 games ahead of LV . . . 44-27 at PNC Park . . . 47-25 on the road . . . 8-2 in final 10 games, winning last 7 . . . Led league in hitting (.266), runs (654), ERA (2.98) and shutouts (24).

Season series: 9-7 SWB including 5-3 at PNC Park.

Reading Fightin’ Phils, Eastern League Eastern Division Champions.

Division Series, best-of-5
Game 1, tonight 7:00–Reading (Mark Leiter Jr., 6-3, 3.39) at Trenton (Ronald Herrera, 10-7, 3.75)
Game 2, Thursday, Sept. 8, 7:00 p.m. Reading (Ricardo Pinto 7-6, 4.10) at Trenton
Game 3, Friday, Sept. 9, 7:05 p.m. Trenton at Reading (Elniery Garcia 0-0, 0.00)
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m., Trenton at Reading*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 6:05 p.m., Trenton at Reading*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5
September 13-17

Reading: Won division title by 2.5 games over Trenton with an 88-52 record . . . 51-20 at FirstEnergy Stadium . . . 38-32 on the road . . . 6-4 in final 10 games . . . Led League in hitting (.270), runs (790), hits (1,309), doubles (270), home runs (185), walks (515), on-base percentage (.344), slugging (.450) and OPS (795).

Trenton Thunder (NYY): Finished second (87-55) to earn playoff berth (first and second place team in the EL’s two divisions) . . . 49-22 at Arm & Hammer Park . . . 38-33 on the road . . . 6-4 in final 10 games . . . Dominated in pitching, leading EL in ERA (3.12), shutouts (15), saves (50), fewest runs (491), strikeouts (1,239) and WHIP (1,21).

Season Series: 9-6 Reading . . . 6-6 in three series played in Trenton while only one series in Reading, a 3-0 Fightin Phils sweep . . . Season ended in Trenton, 2-2 split.

Lakewood BlueClaws, South Atlantic League North Division. 2nd-half champions.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-3
Game 1, tonight, 7:05–Hagerstown (Jefry Rodriguez, 7-11, 4.96) at Lakewood (Alberto Tirado, 7-1, 3.23)
Game 2, Friday, Sept. 9, 7:05 p.m. Lakewood (Jose Taveras, 8-8, 3.28) at Hagerstown
Game 3, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m. Lakewood at Hagerstown*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5

Lakewood: Finished 6th in 1st half, 29-40 . . . Won 2nd half, 44-25 by 5 games over Hagerstown . . . 21-11 at FirstEnergy Park . . . 24-14 on road . . . 8-2 in final 10 games . . . 74-65 overall, 2nd in division to Hagerstown . . . Second in team average (.266), fifth in ERA (3.53), tied for 1st in shutouts (14) and pitchers led in strikeouts (1,267).

Hagerstown Suns (WSH): Won 1st half, 43-27 . . . Finished second in 2nd half, 40-30 . . . 7-3 in final 10 games . . . 18-15 at Municipal Stadium . . . 22-15 on the road . . . Overall 83-57, 1st in division . . . Third in team average (.261), 1st in runs scored (668), 11th in team ERA (3.75).

Season Series: 15-7 Hagerstown; started season 11-0 vs. Lakewood through May 24.

Gulf Coast League Phillies, (43-15), Northwest Division Champions.

Championship Series, best-of-3
Game 1, Cardinals 4, Phillies 0.
Game 2, Phillies 3, Cardinals 2.
Game 3, 12 noon today–Clearwater* (18-year-old, 6-foot-10 LH Kyle Young, 3-0, 2.67)
*If necessary

Scoring 3 times in the B5 on a double by CF Malvin Matos and a two-run single by RF Jhailyn Ortiz, the Phillies went on to edge the Cardinals, 3-2, yesterday and even the best-of-3 Championship Series at 1-1. Until that inning, the Phillies were 1-14 with RISP in the series.

The Cardinals’ runs came in T1 on two hits and two errors off starter Kevin Gowdy. Both runs were unearned. The Cardinals hit into a DP to end the 8th and end the game.

Gowdy, 2-2-2-0-0-0; Nick Fanti(W), 5.1-3-0-0-0-6; Randy Alcantara, .2-1-0-0-0-0; Jose Nin (SV), 1-2-0-0-1-0.

Ortiz had 2 other singles and 2B Dan Brito added a pair of hits. CF Mickey Moniak did not play because of a hip injury. He left the first game after 2 at-bats.

Transactions
Lehigh Valley: INF Angelo Mora and RHR Gregory Infante, transferred from Reading.
Reading: SS Malquin Canelo, transferred from Reading; LHR Hoby Milner, transferred from LV.
Clearwater, LHR Joey Denato, transferred from Reading.
Lakewood: of Jesus Alastre, transferred from Williamsport.
Williamsport: RHS Harold Arauz, transferred from Lakewood.

This Date

Gregory Michael Luzinski (the Bull) Positions: Leftfielder and Designated Hitter Bats: Right, Throws: Right Height: 6' 1", Weight: 220 lb. Born: November 22, 1950 in Chicago, IL (Age 63) High School: Notre Dame HS (Niles, IL) Drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 1st round (11th pick) of the 1968 amateur draft. Signed June 9, 1968. (All Transactions) Debut: September 9, 1970 (Age 19) Teams (by GP): Phillies/WhiteSox 1970-1984 Agents: Jack Sands [*] Final Game: September 24, 1984 (Age 33)

September 7, 1971, 2nd game

Greg Luzinski hits frst major league home run (off RHP Reggie Cleveland), a towering shot into Section 570 in a 7-5, 10-inning loss to St. Louis.

September 7, 1972
LHP Steve Carlton beats his former team (Cardinals), 2-1, at the Vet and strikes out nine, breaking the Phillies single season record of 268 set by Jim Bunning in 1965. 23rd win breaks the club record for a LHP set by Eppa Rixey in 1916.

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

(Phillies Insider will be posted seven days a week until the minor league playoffs end. Happy reading).

Eickhoff Grinds Out Win

Three weeks ago the Phillies wrapped up Alumni Weekend with a 7-6 Sunday win over the Rockies. The offense didn’t put that many runs on the scoreboard again until yesterday, a 6-2 win in Miami.

During that three week period, the Phillies hit 17 home runs. Guess who shares the lead with four each. None other than the Venezuela double-play buddies, Cesar Hernandez and Freddy Galvis. Galvis’ fourth was an upper deck blast to right field yesterday.

Jerad Eickhoff survived having the first two batters scoring but battled through five scoreless innings. He retired 11 of the last 12 hitters. A bulldog on the mound Eickhoff kept his team in the game paving the way for the come-from-behind win. He isn’t flashy and overpowering but grinds his way through every inning. Edubray Ramos, Hector Neris and Jeanmar Gomez did their thing, one perfect inning apiece.

Phil-Ins
Eickhoff was 2-8 after a June 2 loss. He joined Jeremy Hellickson in double-figure wins. Last time the Phillies had two pitchers in that scenario was 2013, Cliff Lee (14-8) and Kyle Kendrick (10-13) . . . Galvis’ homer in the fifth broke a streak of 18 scoreless innings . . . His previous four homers came in loses . . . Ryan Howard has 103 plate appearances and no home runs in Marlins Park.

Minor League Report
Lehigh Valley IronPigs (84-58), International League North Division. Wildcard winner.

Ended the season with a 7-0 win over Rochester. WP: David Buchanan (10-9), 7-2-0-0-0-8. Luis Garcia pitched a scoreless ninth extending his scoreless streak to 17.1 innings. 5 different players had multiple hits led by 2B Jesmuel Valentin’s 3. 3B Taylor Featherston (3) and 1B Brock Stassi (2) were the RBI leaders.

Day off today is followed by the start of the semi-final playoffs against the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Railriders (NYY).

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-5
Game 1, Wednesday, Sept. 7, 7:05 p.m., Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (LH Jordan Montgomery 5-1, 0.97) at Lehigh Valley (Ben Lively, 11-5, 3.05)
Game 2, Thursday, Sept. 8, 7:05 p.m., SWB at LV (Anthony Vasquez, 4-1, 2.64)
Game 3, Friday, Sept. 9, 6:35 p.m., LV (Phil Klein, 5-1, 1.52) at SWB
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 6:35 p.m., LV at SWB*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 1:05 p.m., LV at SWB*
*If necessary

Governor Cup Championship, best-of-5.
September 13-17

Reading Fightin’ Phils (88-52), Eastern League Eastern Division Champions.

It was only fitting in Trenton’s Arm & Hammer Park the Fightins put on a power display in a 5-run 10th inning and an 11-6 season finale win. RF Dylan Cozens led off the explosion with his 40th home run and fellow slugger, 1B Rhys Hoskins, followed with his 38th blast. 2 batters later 3B Harold Martinez unloaded a 2-run HR (9). CF Roman Quinn wrapped up the inning with a run-scoring 2B. He had 2 doubles, a single, 2 RBI and 2 SB (30-31). Victor Arano, one of 6 Reading pitchers, worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the B9 and was the winner (1-1).

00 dylan rhys final

Cozens is the first Eastern League player with 40 home runs since Glens Falls’ Ron Kittle in 1981. He finished with 125 RBI in 134 games and set Reading records in homers, RBI and total bases (304). He also led the minor leagues in homers and RBI.

Reading and the Trenton Thunder (NYY) closed out the season with four games in Arm & Hammer Park. Following a day off today the two teams return there for the first two games of the Division Series.

Division Series, best-of-5
Game 1, Wednesday, Sept. 7, 7:00 p.m. Reading (Mark Leiter Jr., 6-3, 3.39) at Trenton (Ronald Herrera, 10-7, 3.75)
Game 2, Thursday, Sept. 8, 7:00 p.m. Reading (Ricardo Pinto 7-6, 4.10) at Trenton
Game 3, Friday, Sept. 9, 7:05 p.m. Trenton at Reading (Elniery Garcia 0-0, 0.00)
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m., Trenton at Reading*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 6:05 p.m., Trenton at Reading*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5
September 13-17

Lakewood BlueClaws (44-25), South Atlantic League North Division. 2nd-half champions.

Ended the season by sweeping a four-game series against Greensboro, 5-0. It was the BlueClaws’ 3rd straight shutout and improved their September record to 5-0, giving them 30 wins in their last 40 games. WP: Harold Arauz (6-6), 7-4-0-0-1-8. DH Jan Hernandez, 2 H, RBI. 1B Will Garcia, 1 H, 2 RBI. CF Mark Laird, 1-3, to finish the season at .353 in 31 games in Lakeland.

Day off today is followed by the start of the playoffs on Wednesday against the 1st-half winners, Hagerstown Suns (WSH).

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-3
Game 1, Wednesday, Sept. 7, 7:05 p.m. Hagerstown at Lakewood (Alberto Tirado, 7-1, 3.23)
Game 2, Friday, Sept. 9, 7:05 p.m. Lakewood (Jose Taveras, 8-8, 3.28) at Hagerstown
Game 3, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m. Lakewood at Hagerstown*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5

Williamsport Crosscutters (39-36), New York-Penn League Pinckney Division.

Ended their season with a 4-2 to division champion State College. CF Dave Martinelli, 1B, 2B, RBI. SS Chandler Hall, 3-4.

Gulf Coast League Phillies, (43-15), Northwest Division Champions.

Blanked by the Cardinals, 3-0, in the opening playoff game in Jupiter. Phillies out-hit the Cardinals, 7-4, but left 11 on base after going 0-8 with RISP. LP: Mauricio Llovera, 4.1-3-3-3-3-4.

Championship Series, best-of-3
Game 1, Cardinals 4, Phillies 0.
Game 2, 12 noon Tuesday, Clearwater.
Game 3, 12 noon, Wednesday, Clearwater*
*If necessary.

Transactions
Lehigh Valley: OF Osmel Aguila, transferred from Reading.
Reading: CF Roman Quinn, activated from DL; RHP Will Morris and LHP Elniery Garcia, transferred from Clearwater.
GCL Phillies: INF Raul Rivas, transferred from Clearwater.

This Date
September 6, 1952, 1st game

4 R UMAX     Power Look 2000  V2.0 [3]

4 R UMAX Power Look 2000 V2.0 [3]


RHP Robin Roberts gives up six runs in eight innings but goes the route as the Phillies rally for a 7-6 win over Boston in 17 innings, first game of a Saturday doubleheader. Roberts’ line: 17 innings, 18 hits, 6 runs, 5 earned, 2 walks, 5 strikeouts. He faced 71 batters. Assuming he threw five pitches per batter, that’s 355 pitches. Second game is suspended after eight with the Phillies losing. It is completed the next day, a 3-1 loss.

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

(Phillies Insider will be posted seven days a week until the minor league playoffs end. Happy reading).

No Storm, No Offense

What do tropical storm Hermine and the Phillies offense have in common?

Neither showed up at Citizens Bank Park yesterday.

Atlanta swept three weekend games ending the Phillies homestand at 0-6 (29 hits and 11 runs scored in six games). In Phillies history they’ve had four winless homestands (six or more games). Two have come this year.

Jake Thompson had his second consecutive solid start. He has a 1.93 ERA for 14 innings in those starts. His run support, zero. Zero is also the number of runs the Phillies scored off Atlanta’s bullpen this weekend. At home the Phillies are hitting .222 and have scored 222 runs, 3.22 runs a game.

The Phillies are hitting .252 and scoring 4.15 runs per game on the road. That’s where they will be this week, starting this afternoon in Miami (3 days, 3 games) and ending with four in Washington beginning on Thursday. Next 14 games are against NL teams in the running for postseason berths.

5 Things
Five things to know about the Marlins:
**Fresh from 0-3 weekend in Cleveland; 2-8 in last 10 games
**7-6 edge over Phillies in season series; 3-3 at home
**.267 team average is second to the Rockies’ .276.
**3.48 team ERA at home; 4.41 on road.
**Tied with Mets for most saves, 46.

Minor League Report
Lehigh Valley IronPigs (84-58), International League North Division. Wildcard winner.

Lost, 5-4, to Rochester. ND: Phil Klein, 6-6-1-1-3-5, lowering ERA to 1.52. LP: Jimmy Cordero. 2 H: CF Cam Perkins, 1B Cody Asche, 3B Darnell Sweeney . . . David Buchanan (9-9) 1:35 this afternoon vs. Rochester, final regular season game.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-5
Game 1, Wednesday, Sept. 7, 7:05 p.m., Scranton/Wilkes-Barre at Lehigh Valley
Game 2, Thursday, Sept. 8, 7:05 p.m., SWB at LV
Game 3, Friday, Sept. 9, 6:35 p.m., LV at SWB
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 6:35 p.m., LV at SWB*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 1:05 p.m., LV at SWB*
*If necessary

Governor Cup Championship, best-of-5.
September 13-17

Reading Fightin’ Phils (88-52), Eastern League Eastern Division Champion.

Shut out on 2 singles in Trenton, 4-0. LP: John Richy (4-4), 6-7-4-4-2-4 . . . Regular season game ends at 1 this afternoon in Trenton.

Division Series, best-of-5
Game 1, Wednesday, Sept. 7, 7:00 p.m. at Trenton
Game 2, Thursday, Sept. 8, 7:00 p.m. at Trenton
Game 3, Friday, Sept. 9, 7:05 p.m. at Reading
Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m., at Reading*
Game 5, Sunday, Sept. 11, 6:05 p.m., at Reading*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5
September 13-17

Clearwater Threshers (43-25) Florida State League North Division.

Ended season with a 9-6 win in Dunedin. WP: Brandon Leibrandt (4-1), 7-3-3-1-2, 1 pick off; R in B3 ended his consecutive scoreless streak at 19 innings. CF Zach Coppola and 2B Josh Tobias, 3 hits each. C Austin Bossart, 3 RBI . . . A second game, the one rained out onThursday was canceled as Dunedin clinched on Saturday

Threshers finished in 2nd place in both the 1st and 2nd halves. Their overall record (82-54) is the league’s best and 2nd best in the 13 years of the franchise. A year ago they also had the best record, won both halves but lost to Daytona, 2-0, in the first round of the playoffs.

Lakewood BlueClaws (43-25), South Atlantic League North Division. 2nd-half champions.

Blanked Greensboro, 3-0, behind Franklyn Kilome, 6-2-0-0-0-10; WP Zach Morris (8-3), 2-2-0-0-1-2 and SV (14) Sutter McLoughlin, 2-0-0-0-0-2. 3B Jan Hernandez, 3-run 3B in B8 . . . Harold Arauz (5-6) 1:05 this afternoon vs. Greensboro, final regular season game.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-3
Game 1, Wednesday, Sept. 7, 7:05 p.m. at Lakewood.
Game 2, Friday, Sept. 9, 7:05 p.m. at Hagerstown.
Game 3, Saturday, Sept. 10, 7:05 p.m. at Hagerstown.*
*If necessary

Championship Series, best-of-5

Williamsport Crosscutters (39-35), New York-Penn League Pinckney Division.

Lost, 3-2, at State College. LP: Tyler Hallead (2-2). DH Enmanuel Garcia, 2B, HR (6), RBI, SB; 3 HR in last 5 G . . . Adonis Medina (5-3) 1:05 this afternoon vs. State College, final regular season game.

Gulf Coast League Phillies, (43-15), Northwest Division Champions.

18-year-old RH Sixto Sanchez tossed 7 shutout innings in the Phillies 4-3 win over the Braves in Bright House Field. With the win in a 1-game playoff, the Phillies advanced to the championship series. Sanchez, from Dominican Republic, gave up 4 hits and recorded 4 strikeouts. During the season, he was 5-0 with a league-leading 0.50 ERA (3 ER in 54 IP).

With 2 out in the 1st inning, CF Mickey Moniak was hit by a pitch and 1B Danny Zardon followed with a home run. Moniak’s double and a single by LF Malvin Matos drove in the two runs in the B5. 2B Dan Brito and DH Josh Stephen each had 2 hits and a run scored.

The Braves scored 3 in T9 off closer Tyler Frohwirth but Jose Nin got the last 2 outs for the save.

In the other semi-final playoff game the Cardinals eliminated the Red Sox, 4-0 . . . Phillies and Cardinals did not meet during the season . . . The Cardinals won the East Division (31-21). 17-10 at home, 16-11 on road . . . Phillies: 22-7 on road, 21-8 at home . . . Phillies led the league with a 2.51 ERA. Offensively with 294 runs, 514 hits and 109 doubles.

Championship Series, best-of-3
Game 1, 12 noon today, in Jupiter.
Game 2, 12 noon Tuesday, Clearwater.
Game 3, 12 noon, Wednesday, Clearwater*
*If necessary.

Transactions
Reading: RHS Tom Eshelman, DL (appendicitis).

This Date
September 4, 1978: Claimed INF Pete Mackanin on waivers from Montreal.

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

(Alert: Phillies Insider will be posted seven days a week until the minor league playoffs end. Happy reading).

Reading Clinches Division Title

Leading 4-0 after four innings on Friday, the Phillies offense was shut down by the Braves bullpen. Tied at 4-4, the Phillies had a runner on second with no outs in the eighth but didn’t score. Atlanta then won it with four runs off the Phillies bullpen in the ninth.

Leading 4-2 after five innings last night, the Phillies offense was again shut down by the Braves bullpen. In four innings, the Phillies got one hit, a lead-off double by Maikel Franco in the bottom of the eighth in a 4-4 game. He didn’t score but Atlanta then won it with two runs off the Phillies bullpen in the 10th.

Bullpen comparison: Atlanta, eight innings, zero runs; Phillies, six innings, seven runs (six earned).

RISP oddity: in Friday’s loss, the Phillies were 2-11. In Atlanta’s win last night, 0-12.

Vince Velasquez pitched well in a no decision, two earned runs in seven innings, no walks, eight strikeouts, 92 pitches, 62 strikes. It was his last start of the season having reached a career-high 131 innings.

Minor League Report
All six Phillies minor league teams will finish the season with winning records. Last time that happened was 1953. Their farm system then consisted of Baltimore, Spokane, Schenectady, Bradford, Pulaski, Mattoon, Salt Lake City, Terre Haute, Granby.

Prices in 1953: milk 94 cents, gas 22 cents, bread 16 cents.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs (84-57), International League North Division.

Handed Rochester a 5-1 loss. WP: Nick Pivetta (1-2), 5-3-0-0-1-2. LV hit 4 HR: SS J.P. Crawford (4), 2B Jesmuel Valentin (4), 1B Cody Asche (6), RF Cedric Hunter (10) . . . Phil Klein (5-1), 6:35 this evening vs. Rochester. Regular season ends tomorrow.

Semi-final Playoffs start Wednesday, best-of-5
South winner (Gwinnett or Charlotte) meets West winner (Columbus); wildcard (Lehigh Valley) meets North winner (Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, NYY), best-of-5.

Governor Cup Championship, best-of-5.

Reading Fightin’ Phils (88-51), Eastern League Eastern Division.

Clinched the division title for the second straight year and home field advantage in postseason play by pounding out 18 hits in a 10-4 win in Trenton. 3 hits each: 1B Rhys Hoskins, DH Jake Fox and 3B Harold Martinez.

00 cozens records

RF Dylan Cozens hit his 39th homer, a club record, and drove in 3 runs giving him 123 for the season, also a club record.

John Richy (4-3), 7 tonight in Trenton. Regular season ends tomorrow afternoon at 1.

Division Series starts Wednesday, best-of-5
While the Reading Fightin Phils and Trenton Thunder (NYY) are in the playoffs, 3 teams still battling in the Western Division, Akron RubberDucks (CLE) Altoona Curve (PIT) and Harrisburg Senators (WSH).

Championship Series, best-of-5

Clearwater Threshers (42-25) Florida State League North Division.

2nd-place Threshers were eliminated from reaching the postseason with a 6-5, 11-inning loss to 1st-place Dunedin. Trailing, 4-3, RF Jiandido Tromp hit a 2-run homer in B8 to give Clearwater the lead. It was his 20 HR, 10 each with Lakewood and Clearwater. Dunedin tied the game in T9 and won it the next inning. The Threshers finished in 2nd place during the 1st half and again in the 2nd half . . . Regular season ends this afternoon in Dunedin, Brandon Leibrandt (3-1).

Lakewood BlueClaws (43-25), South Atlantic League North Division.

Blanked Greensboro, 3-0, behind Jose Taveras (8-8), 6-1-0-0-4-10 and Grant Dyer, 3rd SV, 3-3-0-0-0-4 . . . DH Mark Laird, H, 2 BB, SB . . . Franklyn Kilome (5-8), 7:05 tonight vs. Greensboro. Regular season ends tomorrow.

Semi-final Playoffs, best-of-3
Hagerstown Suns (WSH)/Lakewood BlueClaws.
Charleston RiverDogs (NYY)/Rome Braves (ATL).

Championship Series, best-of-5

Williamsport Crosscutters (39-34), New York-Penn League Pinckney Division.

Won 5th straight, 10-0, in Batavia, 3 players had 3 hits each in the 17-hit attack: RF Jesus Alastre (14th SB), LF Enmanuel Garcia and C Brett Barbier. 3B Lucas Williams, HR (2), 4 RBI. WP: Ranger Suarez (6-4), 5.1-2-0-0-4-1 . . . Bailey Falter (1-6), 6:05 tonight in State College. Regular season ends tomorrow.

Gulf Coast League Phillies, (43-15), Northwest Division Champions.

Semi-final Playoffs, 1-game
12 noon today: Braves at Phillies and Red Sox at Cardinals.

Championship Series, best-of-3

Transactions
Reading: RHS Alec Asher, added to roster on rehab assignment.

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

(Alert: Phillies Insider will be posted seven days a week until the minor league playoffs end).

Lehigh Valley, Lakewood Reach Playoffs

Against the Washington Nationals whose pitching staff has second lowest ERA in the league at 3.44, the Phillies lost three games this week scoring a total of three runs. The Atlanta Braves arrived in town last night with a 4.56 ERA that ranked 12th.

Ryan Howard doubled in a first-inning run and A. J. Ellis hit a three-run homer in the second to give the Phillies an early 4-0 pad. The offense went silent after that, the same sound you hear in a library. In their four-game losing streak of 36 innings, they have been scoreless in 32.

Meanwhile the Braves tied the game with four in their fifth and won the game with four runs off struggling Jeanmar Gomez in the ninth to break a four-game losing streak at Citizens Bank Park.

Storyline: Atlanta was 6-12 RISP, Phillies 1-11.

Minor League Report

Lehigh Valley IronPigs (83-57), International League North Division.

Clinched the wildcard berth with a 7-1 win in Rochester, the second postseason appearance in franchise history (2011). The Red Wings were hitless until 2 out in the ninth when Elvis Araujo gave up a hit and a run. WP: Ben Lively (11-5), 6-0-0-0-0-10; followed by Joely Rodriguez, 2-0-0-0-2-3 and Araujo, 1-1-1-1-1-0. After the game, each team headed for Allentown and the final three games of the regular season . . . Nick Pivetta (0-2), 6:35 tonight.

Postseason: South winner (Gwinnett or Charlotte) meets West winner (Columbus); wildcard (Lehigh Valley) meets North winner (Scranton/Wilkes-Barre), best-of-5. Winners advance to the Governor Cup Championship, best-of-5.

Reading Fightin’ Phils (87-51), Eastern League Eastern Division.

Trenton edged Reading, 2-1, on a game-tying home run in B8 off Victor Arano and a walk-off HR off Jesen Therrien. ND: Mark Leiter Jr., 6-5-0-0-1-9. Since each team has qualified for the postseason, the two teams are battling for the division title and home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Reading leads Trenton by 1.5 games. Three games remain in Trenton, tonight and Sunday night and Monday afternoon . . . Ricardo Pinto (6-6), 7:00 tonight.

Postseason: The top two teams in each division, best-of-5. Winners advance to championship round, best-of-5.

Clearwater Threshers (42-24), Florida State League North Division.

2nd-place Threshers remained alive for the 2nd-half title in their division with their 5th straight win, 4-2 over 1st-place Dunedin at Bright House Field. Clearwater is 1 game behind but 2 in the loss column. To reach the postseason, the Threshers must win the remaining two games, both against Dunedin. Teams meet tonight in Clearwater and end the regular season at 5 p.m. Sunday in Dunedin. Clearwater will have the league’s best overall record but could miss out on the playoffs.

Elniery Garcia (12-4) was last night’s winner, 7-2-1-1-3-11, career-high in strikeouts. SV: Yacksel Rios (1). DH Jiandido Tromp, 2b, 2 RBI . . . Luke Leftwich (3-4) tonight.

Postseason: 1st and 2nd half division winners, best-of-3. Winners advance to championship, best-of-5.

Lakewood BlueClaws (42-25), South Atlantic League North Division.

After finishing in 6th place in the 1st half, the BlueClaws clinched the 2nd-half title with a 10-4 win at home over Greensboro. Last time Lakewood was in the postseason was 2010. WP: Seranthony Dominquez (5-2), 6-4-0-0-4-8, stretching his scoreless streak to 21 innings. RF Jose Pujols, 3 H, 2 RBI; his RBI double started the 6 run 1st inning. DH Mark Laird, 2 R, 1 H, 2 RBI . . . Regular season ends Monday . . . Jose Taveras (7-8), 7:05 tonight vs. Greensboro.

Victory was their 21st in the last 27 games. The BlueClaws began the season 1-9 and finished the 1st half, 29-40, 13.5 games behind Hagerstown whom they will meet in the playoffs.

Postseason: 1st and 2nd half division winners, best-of-3. Winners advance to championship, best-of-5. Season ends Monday.

Williamsport Crosscutters (38-34), New York-Penn League Pinckney Division.

Although not in the postseason, the Cutters clinched a winning season with their 4th straight victory, 9-1, in Batavia. WP: Felix Paulino (3-4), 6-3-1-1-2-5, lowering his ERA to 2.89. 1B Darick Hall, HR (9) . . . Ranger Suarez (5-4), 7:05 tonight in Batavia.

Gulf Coast League Phillies, (43-15), Northwest Division Champions.

Postseason:
10 this morning—Red Sox and Twins, tied for 1st in South Division, have a 1-game playoff to determine the winner. 12 noon game on Friday was postponed by Hermine.

1st round, 1-game playoff, 12 noon on Sunday:
Braves at Phillies (Phillies won season series, 7-1)
Red Sox-Twins winner at Cardinals

Championship series, best-of-3

Transactions
Lehigh Valley, RHR Jimmy Cordero, transferred from Reading.
Reading, LHR Tom Windle, transferred from Clearwater.
Clearwater, C Gregori Rivero, transferred from Williamsport. RHS Drew Anderson, DL (sprained right knee).

Honors
RHP Phil Klein of the Lehigh Valley IronPigs is the International League Pitcher of the Month for August, 4-0, 1.06 ERA for 5 starts.

Instructional League
Florida Instructional League staff and players report on September 18 and work out the next day. Game schedule runs from September 26 to October 14. Morning workouts at Carpenter Complex with games at Bright House Field.

Twitter
@ShenkLarry

(Post Alert: Phillies Insider will be posted seven days a week until the minor league playoffs end).