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Unpleasant Pattern

An unpleasant pattern continues. For the fourth straight game, the Phillies offense clawed its way back in the game and the very next inning, the bullpen let the enemy score.  The result: two losses to the Mets followed by two losses to the Pirates. A big culprit in each case are walks issued by the Phillies.

Pittsburgh has now won eight of its last nine games at Citizens Bank Park.  The Mets are riding the same bus, winning at Citizens Bank Park.

Hamels takes the hill tonight in game three of the four-game series.  He’s 2-2 in his career against the Pirates.  Last time he started against the Pirates was July 4, 2013. He won.

Minor Leagues
Players of the Week (May 4-10)
1B-DH Art Charles, Reading. Hit .632 (12-19), 2 doubles, 4 home runs, 8 RBI, 1.474 slugging percentage.

RHP Aaron Nola, 2 games started, 2-0, 15 innings, 9 hits, 2 runs, 2 walks, 11 strikeouts.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs (10-23)
3B Maikel Franco delivered a 2-run walk-off single as LV rallied for a 6-5 win over Columbus. He also had RBI.  LF Cody Asche, batting second, 2 singles, 2 walks, 1 run.  RF Domonic Brown, single, triple, 2 RBI. No decision: David Buchanan, 6.2-10-5-3-0-4. WP: Cesar Jimenez (1-2).
Next: RH Phillippe Aumont (1-1), 10:35 this morning vs. Columbus.  LV leaves after the game for New York, four games in Rochester and three in Syracuse.

Reading Fightin Phils (16-14)
CF Roman Quinn singled, stole a base (#15) and scored a first-inning run. But, that was it for Reading’s offense resulting in a 4-1 loss in Harrisburg. LP: Zach Elfin (2-3), 6-9-4-4-2-2.
Next: LH Tom Windle (0-1), 10:30 this morning in Harrisburg.

Clearwater Threshers (15-16)
Collected 11 hits (10 singles) and left 10 runners on base in losing, 8-2, to
Port Charlotte.  Second game was postponed. SS J. P. Crawford, 1-3; has hit in all 5 games since coming off the DL. LP: David Whitehead (2-4), 5-8-7-4-2-3.
Next: RH Yacksel Rios (0-1) and LH Brandon Leibrandt (3-1), in 10:30 doubleheader this morning vs. Port Charlotte.

Lakewood BlueClaws (15-16)
1B Rhys Hoskins was double shy of the cycle in a 9-5 win vs. Asheville. Homer was his fifth. 3 RBI boosted season total to 23. LH Herlis Rodriguez, 2-4, leading off the first inning with a home run, his second. WP Josh Taylor (2-2), 5-4-2-2-3-4.
Next: Bus ride to Kannapolis where the BlueClaws open a series on Thursday night, RH Tyler Viza (3-1).

Transactions
Lehigh Valley: C Tommy Joseph placed on DL (concussion). LHR Nick Hill assigned to Reading.

Reading: C Gabriel Lino activated from the DL. C Logan Moore moved to LV. LHR Ethan Stewart placed on DL (left bicep strain).

Clearwater: CF Aaron Brown activated from DL.  OF Carlos Duran returned to extended spring training.

Today in Phillies History

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


1954: RHP Robin Roberts allows a lead-off home run to Bobby Adams and then retires next 27 Cincinnati hitters in order as the Phillies beat the Reds, 8-1, at Connie Mack Stadium.

1958: RHP Robin Roberts sets club record with his 191st win, 5-2, over Milwaukee at Connie Mack Stadium.  RHP Grover Cleveland Alexander, previous record holder, won his 190th game in 1917.

Phun Fact
Johnny Callison is the lone Phillies player to hit a walk-off home run in an All-Star Game, 9th inning, 1964, at Shea Stadium.

 

 

 

Change For The Future

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The Phillies future took a turn after last night’s game.  Asche was optioned to Lehigh Valley to play left field on a daily basis.  Maikel Franco is expected to join the Phillies this weekend and play third base. Asche’s departure cleared a roster spot for O’Sullivan, who will start tonight’s game against Pittsburgh.

By keeping Franco at LV for 40 days, it delays his free agency a year until from 2020 to 2021. Under baseball rules, an optioned player (Asche) must remain in the minor leagues for 10 days unless there is an injury on the big club.

1-Run Loss
Control usually isn’t an issue with Williams but last night two walks cost him as the Pirates hung on for a 4-3 win.  Marte followed the two, third-inning walks with his seventh homer in the last 24 games. A walk and an error accounted for the Pirates fourth run, an unearned run off Diekman.

The win went to Cole, who is now 9-1 in his last 12 starts.  He gave up single runs in the first and sixth.  The Phillies third run was a ninth-inning homer by Herrera, his first in the majors.  But, the Phillies fell short and are now 0-20 when trailing after eight innings.

Minor Leagues
Lehigh Valley IronPigs (9-23)
Columbus won its seventh in a row, 6-2, at LV. 3B Maikel Franco extended his hitting streak to 7 games with 2 of LV’s 5 hits; included was his fourth HR.  2 RBI gives him 19.  No decision for Joely Rodriguez, 7-7-2-2-0-3 . . . OF Brian Bogusevic (.423, 4 doubles, 6 RBI, 9 runs) was named the IL Player of the week by MiLB.com.
Next: RH David Buchanan (1-0), 7:05 tonight vs. Columbus.

Reading Fightin Phils (16-13)
Lost, 6-3, at Harrisburg. LP: Jesse Biddle, 6-7-4-3-3-3. CF Roman Quinn, 2 hits, 13th and 14th steals.  RF Aaron Altherr, HR (4) . . . 1B-DH Art Charles (.632, 4 doubles, 4 HR, 8 RBI, 7 runs) was named EL Player of the Week by MiLB.com.
Next: RH Zach Elfin (2-2), 6:30 tonight in Harrisburg.

Clearwater Threshers (15-15)
Game was postponed because of illness to multiple Clearwater players.
Next: Doubleheader tonight vs. Port Charlotte, RH Yacksel Rios (0-1) and RH David Whitehead (2-3).

Lakewood BlueClaws (14-16)
Ended a 5-game losing streak, 8-2, over Asheville. 3 hits each for 1B Rhys Hoskins and RF Herlis Rodriguez. 20-year-old SS Malquin Canelo, 2 hits, boosting May average to .342. WP: Ricardo Pinto (3-1), 7-4-2-2-2-8.
Next: LH Josh Taylor (1-2), 6:35 tonight vs. Asheville.

Transactions
Clearwater: INF Zach Green, DL, left wrist sprain

Extended: INF Emmanuel Marrero moved to Threshers . . . C Lenin Rodriguez, INF Joseph Miranda and OF Luis Mendoza were assigned to the Venezuela Summer League.

Today in Phillies History
1987: 3B Mike Schmidt scores his 1,366th run to break Ed Delahanty’s club record. Phillies drop 5-2 decision at the Astrodome.

Phun Fact
Pinch-hitter George Vukovich is the only Phillies player to hit a walk-off homer in the postseason, 10th inning, 1981 Division Series against Montreal at the Vet.

Just Wondering
The NFL (National Football League) appears to be turning into the National Felon League.

 

 

Pirates In Town

 

Hamels picked up a win over the Mets, pinning the first Phillies loss on Harvey . . . Harang fell to 1-2 on his birthday as Niese moved to 5-0 against the Phillies in his last seven starts . . . 41-year-old Colon improved to 6-1 and extended his streak of not walking a batter to 40.1 consecutive innings. The Mets have won five straight series from the Phillies in Citizens Bank Park. That’s a quick weekend wrap.

Hamels’ start was his 281st, putting him fourth place on the Phillies all-time list ahead of Grover Cleveland Alexander.  Only Chris Short (301), Robin Roberts (472) and Steve Carlton (499) have started more games.

Pirates Next
Pittsburgh comes to Citizens Bank Park for a four-game series that starts tonight and ends Thursday afternoon.  Phillies were 1-6 against the Bucs a year ago, 1-3 at home.

Pirates ERA is 3.12, third best in the NL.  They’ve scored 113 runs, matching the Mets for 11th. Phillies are last, 87.

Minor Leagues
Players of the Month (April)
Lakewood’s 19-year-old OF Carlos Tocci hit in 17 of 20 games last month, .359, with 8 doubles, 1 home run, 11 RBI and 7 steals in 7 tries.

Clearwater’s 22-year-old LP Brandon Leibrandt was 1-1, 1.80 ERA for 4 starts.  25 innings, 5 earned runs, 4 walks, 18 strikeouts.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs (9-21)
LF Brian Bogusevic’s 2-run, walk-off double gave LV a 4-3 win on Friday.  Gwinnett won the next 2, 5-1 and 9-1.  RH Phillippe Aumont, no decision in his third start (Friday), 6-2-0-0-3-1 . . . LH Adam Morgan (0-4) lost on Saturday; RH Severino Gonzalez (1-2) on Sunday . . . 3-hit games: 3B Maikel Franco on Friday; 1B Russ Canzler on Saturday
Next: LH Joely Rodriguez (0-3), 7:05 tonight vs. Columbus.

Reading Fightin Phils (16-12)
After 2 losses, RH Aaron Nola (4-2) won on Sunday at Ernie, 8-4-1-1-0-8. SV: Stephen Shackelford (6) . . . 1B-DH Art Charlies, 9-13 series, including 3 HR and 5 RBI. Hitting .400 . . . RF Aaron Altherr, 6 hits, including a double, triple, 3rd HR
Next: LH Jesse Biddle (3-0), 6:30 tonight in Harrisburg.

Clearwater Threshers (15-15)
Not scheduled Sunday after splitting previous 2 games in Daytona.  7-0 win Saturday night behind RH Mark Leiter (2-0), 6.2-4-0-0-2-4. SS J. P. Crawford, 4-8, 2 RBI.  LF Andrew Pullin 5-10.
Next: Season resumes, 7 tonight vs. Port Charlotte.

Lakewood BlueClaws (13-16)
Shut out Saturday and Sunday by Asheville, stretching losing streak to 5 games and scoreless streak to 26 innings. On Sunday, RH Helmis Rodriguez (Asheville) faced his twin brother, Herlis (Lakewood), and retired him 3 times, once on strikes.

Friday night was a classic: 2-2 tie, stopped after the top of the 17th inning because of fog. After a 30-minute wait, game was called and officially suspended.  Since it was the last game against Augusta for the season, the stats won’t count until the end of the first half of the season. Augusta scored in the third and fifth innings; Lakewood, fifth and eighth. 4 Lakewood relievers pitched 11 scoreless innings.  CF Carlos Tocci, 4-7.  Lakewood had 11 hits, all singles and struck out 17 times.  5 Lakewood pitchers didn’t issue one walk.
Next: RH Ricardo Pinto (2-1), 6:35 tonight vs. Asheville, the last game of the homestand.

Transactions
Lehigh Valley: infielder Chris Nelson, released; catcher Rene Garcia sent to Reading; C John Hester moved from Reading to AAA . . . Reading: Placed C Rene Garcia on the DL; C Cory Bass activated from DL . . . Lakewood: C Chace Numata activated from DL; 2B Timothy Zier on the DL . . . Extended: P Alejandro Garcia released.

Tallest Phillie?
Reader Bill Loos posted a question: wasn’t RHP Jeff Juden 6-8 or 6-9?

Well, conflicting information. Baseball-Reference.com lists him at 6-7.  BaseballAlmanac.com and TheBaseballCube.com, each has him at 6-8. Next time I’m in the office I’ll check Phillies Media Guides.  In the meantime, more fan feedback is welcomed.

Today in Phillies History
1947: Largest Philadelphia major league baseball crowd, 40,720, watches the Phillies sweep a pair from Brooklyn, 7-3 and 5-4, at Shibe Park.

2006: CF Aaron Rowand breaks his nose crashing into centerfield fence at Citizens Bank
Park after making spectacular first-inning catch of a Xavier Nady drive with three on and two out.  Phillies beat New York Mets, 2-0, in a game halted in the bottom of the fifth by rain.

Phun Fact
RHP Robin Roberts was acclaimed as the workhorse of the 1950s decade.  No wonder, he completed 272 of his 472 starts with the Phillies, including 28 in a row at one time.  He also started five All-Star Games for the National League.

Through yesterday, there have been five complete games in the National League, one each for the Dodgers, Rockies, Diamondbacks, Braves and Reds.  How the game has changed.

 

Cole’s 2 Nemesis

 

Sometimes it is difficult to figure out this game of baseball.  Take Hamels, for instance.
He’s a quality big league pitcher with some interesting numbers:

Career: 109-86, 3.29 ERA
Home: 54-43, 3.26
Road: 55-43, 3.32
Month of May: 23-12, most wins for any month.
0-2 Run Support: 11-60, that’s shocking.

More shocking.  He’s 9-15, 3.24 against the Marlins and 8-14, 4.09 vs. the Mets.  They are the only two teams with double-digit wins over Hamels.  He’s 1-3 this season, 0-2 vs. the Marlins.

Just hard to believe that 29 of his 86 losses have come against two NL East teams, teams that haven’t exactly being power houses during his career in the majors.

So, Hamels starts tonight against the Mets’ Matt Harvey who is poison against the Phillies, 5-0, 1.60 out of a career 17-10 record.  At Citizens Bank Park, 3-0, allowing a total of three runs in 19.1 innings.

Time to flip the results.

Special Presentation
Before tonight’s game, Ryan Howard will receive the first base bag from the game in Miami last Friday. Pat Gillick will make the presentation.  Howard played in his 1,299th game at first base that night, breaking the long-time Phillies record set by Fred Luderus.

Who is Luderus?  Check out http://www.phillies.com/alumni to answer that question.

Minor Leagues
Lehigh Valley IronPigs (8-20)
Next: Following a day off on Thursday, Phillippe Aumont (1-1), 7:05 tonight vs. Gwinnett.

Reading Fightin Phils (15-10)
Next: Spent Thursday riding the bus to Erie.  LHP Tom Windle (0-1), 6:35 tonight in Erie.

Clearwater Threshers (14-14)
Won, 6-2, at Daytona behind LH Brandon Leibrandt (3-1), 8-5-2-2-2-7.  SS J. P. Crawford, 2-4, with 2 fielding errors.  LF Andrew Pulli, 2-5, 2 RBI.
Next: RH Victor Arano (0-2), 7:05 tonight in Daytona.

Lakewood BlueClaws (13-14)
Augusta pushed across 3 unearned runs in the top of the ninth for a 4-2 win. Lakewood had only 7 hits, 4 by SS Malquin Canelo and 2nd HR by C Deivi Grullon, a solo shot in the last of the ninth. No decision for rehab starter, Sean O’Sullivan, 4.1-5-1-1-1-5. LP: Tyler Viza (3-1), 4-3-3-0-2-2.
Next: RH Ranfi Casimiro, 7:05 tonight vs. Augusta.

Tallest Phillie?
When 6-foot-7 Elvis Araujo relieved in Atlanta, it prompted Dennis Orlandini, a long-time Phillies fan to e-mail a couple of questions: Do you keep any records on the tallest Phillies players in history? Would you know who is the tallest non-pitcher?

Sorry, we don’t keep a list but I do recall Gene Conley, a right-handed pitcher with the Phillies in 1959-60, was 6-8.  Tallest position player that comes to mind is Jayson Werth, 6-5.

If anyone has other candidates, post it for everyone to read.

Third Generation?

Piper Wine
2-year-old Piper Grace Wine models a 1968 Phillies uniform which belongs to her grandfather, Bobby Wine.  Piper’s dad, Robbie, played two years in the majors with the Astros.  His brother, Cory, was once drafted by the Phillies.

One thing about Piper, she takes after her grandmother, Fran Wine, in looks, smile and personality. That’s a good thing.

 

 

 

 

Hamels-Harvey Tomorrow

Revere and Howard bats are starting to warm up (combined seven hits in last night’s loss), Cody’s bat is going the other way (0-5, four strikeouts) but the pitching is having trouble putting up zeros.

Trip ended in Atlanta, a 3-7 record. In the last nine games, a walk to the enemy wound up scoring.  They gave up 57 runs and 40 walks on the trip.  18 of those walks scored. In 29 games, the enemy has scored in the first inning 13 times.  Going into last night’s game, starters had a 5.09 ERA while the relievers were 3.02.

Team returned home last night and will have a day off today.  Mets are in for the weekend with a classic pitching match-up set for tomorrow night, Harvey vs. Hamels.

Minor Leagues
Lehigh Valley IronPigs (8-20)
Ended a six-game road trip with a 5-3 win in Louisville. Three hits each for LF Brian Bogusevic and RF Domonic Brown, who now has eight hits in a five-game hitting streak. 3B Maikel Franco, two hits, three RBI.  WP: RH David Buchanan (1-0), 6-7-3-2-0-5. SV: Colton Murray (2).
Next: Not scheduled today; Gwinnett comes to Allentown, 7:05 tomorrow night.

Reading Fightin Phils (15-10)
Dropped 11:35 a.m. game to New Hampshire, 5-2. LP: Zach Elfin (2-2), 5-8-5-5-2-2. CF Roman Quinn, fifth triple. RF Aaron Altherr, two RBI.
Next: Travel day today, heading for weekend series in Erie.

Clearwater Threshers (13-14)
Beat Brevard County, 7-3, after losing first two games of the series. 20-year-old shortstop J. P. Crawford returned from the DL, led off as the DH. Single, three-run homer, walk, strikeout and hit by pitcher were his five at-bats. LF Andrew Pullin, three hits, two RBI, stolen base. C Andrew Knapp has hit in nine straight (14 hits); named FSL Hitter of the Week by MiLB.com.  WP: David Whitehead (2-3), 6-7-3-3-0-7.

crawford

Crawford started this season in the rehab program at Carpenter Complex after sustaining a left oblique muscle strain while playing in a minor league spring training game on March 24.  His progressive program, which is basically the same for any position player, included conditioning, therapy, tossing, routine fielding drills which increase in difficulty, dry swinging the bat, hitting off a Tee, hitting against a coach, live batting practice, game activity as a designated hitter and finally full game action. Back-to-back nine-inning games was the final step before being activated.
Next: LH Brandon Leibrandt (2-1), 7:05 tonight in Daytona.

Lakewood BlueClaws (13-13)
Lost, 10-8, to Augusta. LP: Josh Taylor (1-2), .2-6-6-4-1-0. CF Carlos Tocci, 1-5; has 15 hits in last eight games; hitting .378 for the season.
Next: RH Tyler Viza (3-0), 6:35 tonight vs. Augusta.

Transactions
RHP Kevin Walters, Clearwater roster, was released.

Today in Phillies History
2010: LHP Jamie Moyer becomes the oldest pitcher to toss a shutout, 47 years, 170 days, 7-0 over the Atlanta Braves at Citizens Bank Park.  Moyer gave up two hits, walked none and struck out five.

Phun Fact
Four times a player was traded and moved down the hall from the visiting clubhouse to the Phillies clubhouse at Veterans Stadium: Joe Lefebvre, Sixto Lezcano, Lenny Dykstra and Roger Mason.

Chad’s Long Wait

 
Lonely days of lonely rehabilitation for two long years after two surgeries on his right arm.  That’s what Billingsley went through until his Phillies debut last night in Atlanta. Taking a major league mound for the first time since April 15, 2013 (750 days), while pitching for the Dodgers, his debut unfortunately didn’t want to go the way he wished.  Two home runs handed him a loss.

Offensively, the Phillies were stymied by Miller, who allowed three hits while throwing 99 pitchers, 75 for strikes.  It was the fourth time the Phillies have been shutout this young season.

Rubber game of the series is tonight, a chance for the Phillies to end their string of series losses on the road.

Minor Leagues
Players of the Week (April 27-May 3)
Player – 1B Rhys Hoskins, Lakewood…22-year old first baseman, was the epitome of offensive production. In six games, he hit .480 with two doubles, a triple, a home run, 7 RBI and four runs scored. Hoskins reached base at a .536 clip and slugged .760 for a 1.296 OPS. Hoskins was drafted by the Phillies in the fifth round of the 2014 draft and was signed by Joey Davis.

Pitcher – RHP Ben Lively, Reading…The 23-year old continued to stand out in Reading’s rotation. He was 2-0 in two stars, 13 total innings, 13 hits, three earned runs, two walks, 16 strikeouts. Has a 2.16 ERA for the season and opponents are hitting just .231 against him. Earned Eastern League Pitcher of the Week honors.  Lively was acquired by the Phillies this past offseason in the trade that sent Marlon Byrd to the Cincinnati Reds.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs (7-20)
Having hit one home run in previous 16 games, LV hit three among a season-high 19 hits, a 12-1 breeze in Louisville. 3B Maikel Franco (#2) and CF Jordan Danks (#1) homered in the first inning while LF Brian Bogusevic ended it with one in the ninth inning (#2).  He had four hits and scored four runs. Franco and Danks, three hits each.  Win ended a four-game losing streak.
Next: RH David Buchanan gets first AAA start, 6:35 tonight in Louisville, last game of a six-game road trip.

Reading Fightin Phils (15-9)
Scoring crooked numbers in four innings, Reading outlasted New Hampshire, 11-9; third  straight win.  NH out-hit the winners, 19-15. 1B Art Charles, three hits, three runs, second home run and three RBI.  LF Cam Perkins added a double and first home run. WP: Hoby Milner (1-0). SV: Stephen Shackleford (5).  No decision: Jesse Biddle, 4-10-5-5-2-6.
Next: RH Zach Elfin (2-1), 11:35 this morning vs. NH.

Clearwater Threshers (12-14)
Lost third in a row, 2-1, to Brevard County, getting only six hits.  LP: RH Colin Kleven (2-2), 5-6-2-2-3-3.
Next: RH David Whitehead (1-3), 1 this afternoon vs. BC.

Lakewood BlueClaws (13-10)
Were idle after a 5-2, 2-city trip to Georgia.
Next: LH Josh Taylor (1-1), 6:35 tonight vs. Augusta.

Transactions
C John Hester activated from rehab program; joined Reading, replacing C Gabriel Lino on DL with left knee strain . . . LHP Scott Harris activated from DL; joined Lakewood.  RHP Calvin Rayburn, from Lakewood to extended spring training.

Extended: SS J.P. Crawford played a full nine innings for the second straight afternoon.

Today in Phillies History
2011: LHP Cliff Lee matches club record for a left-hander with 16 strikeouts in a 16-10 win vs. Atlanta at Citizens Bank Park.

Happy Birthday: Reliever and broadcaster Larry Andersen, 62.  His last game was in Atlanta on July 31, 1994. He struck out the last hitter, CF Roberto Kelly.

Phun Fact
Dick Allen is the only player to hit a home run over the 447-foot sign in dead centerfield at Connie Mack Stadium.

 

 

Birthday Party

 

How do you stop a five-game losing streak?

Have a birthday party.  Revere turned 27 yesterday and the Phillies partied.  The honoree had his first three-hit game of the season, The Big Piece legged out a run-scoring triple, Sizemore singled him in, Herrera got in the game late and singled, stretching his on-base streak to 18 straight games. The Phillies scored in three straight innings, a season first.

Gonzalez rebounded from his rocky debut to win his first major league game and four relievers were lights out, allowing one hit, one walk and five strikeouts in four innings.  DeFratus did something no Phillies pitcher had done this season….a one-two-three inning on strikeouts. After the game Gonzalez was optioned to Lehigh Valley to make room for Chad Billingsley who is starting on Tuesday night.

A United charter flight took the Phillies from Miami to Atlanta after the game.  A three-game series with the Braves starts tonight.  Phillies are 76-78 in Turner Field but 6-3 a year ago.  Can Revere have another birthday today?

New Leader
Games played at first base in Phillies history:
Ryan Howard (2004-current), 1,301
Fred Luderus (1910-20), 1,298
Sid Farrar (1883-89), 816
Don Hurst (1928-34), 815
Kitty Bransfield (1905-11), 781

Moving Up
Utley has now moved into 10th place for games played in Phillies history, 1,502, passing
Granny Hamner (1,501). Willie Jones is ninth, 1,520 and Sherry Magee, eighth, 1,521.

Minor Leagues
Lehigh Valley IronPigs (6-19)
A lost weekend in Indianapolis as the IronPigs were swept in a 3-game series . . . RH Phillippe Aumont, in his second start, got the loss in Friday’s 4-0 decision, 3-6-3-3-2-5.  All 3 runs came in the first inning on 3 hits . . . The Indians scored 3 in the last of the ninth off RH Hector Neris to win, 6-5, the next night . . . Sunday produced 8 singles and a 6-2 defeat.  Maikel Franco stole home on the back end of a double steal. LV pitchers gave up 9 hits and 7 walks.
Next: LH Joely Rodriguez (0-2), 6:35 tonight in Louisville.

Reading Fightin Phils (13-9)
Held to 1 run on 8 hits in 2 losses to Portland on Friday and Saturday, Reading broke out scoring a run in 6 separate innings in Sunday’s 6-5 win . . . RH Zach Elfin (2-1) lost Friday, 3-0, 8-5-3-3-1-5; allowed a 2-run HR in the second inning and an eighth-inning run; retired  22 of 28 at one point; 93 pitches, 60 for strikes . . . LH Tom Wendle had a strange outing on Saturday, 7 walks, 2 strikeouts, 0 hits and 0 runs in a no decision.  He walked 4 in the first inning but was aided by a 9-2 double play and walked 3 more in the next inning . . . RH Ben Lively (2-0) won on Sunday, 6-7-3-3-1-9; 94 pitches, 64 for strikes. RH Stephen Shackleford, 4th save. LF Brian Pointer, 3rd HR, 2 RBI.
Next: RH Aaron Nola (2-2), 6:35 tonight vs. New Hampshire.

Clearwater Threshers (12-12)
Dropped 2 of 3 to Dunedin . . . Out-hit Dunedin, 11-8, but left 10 on base in Friday’s 4-2 loss for RH David Whitehead (1-3), 6-6-3-3-0-7; allowed a 2-run homer in the first . . . RF Dylan Cozens had 2 singles, a double, 2nd HR and drove in 3 with LF Andrew Pullin adding a 2-run homer in Saturday’s 8-2 win. SS Drew Stankiewicz had his third straight multi-hit game.  WP: LH Brandon Leibrandt (2-1), 6-1-1-1-2-9; lowered ERA to 1.74.  Hit was a fifth-inning triple . . . Threshers were blanked on 7 hits Sunday, 8-0.
Next: RH Mark Leiter (1-0), makes first start of season, 7:00 tonight vs. Brevard County.

Lakewood BlueClaws (13-10)
Began May winning 3 games at Savannah, first 3-game winning streak since July of last season . . . Gigantic series for CF Carlos Tocci, 8-12, 3 stolen bases giving him 9-9 for the season; average jumped to .400; has 12 multi-hit games out of 24 . . . RH Matt Hockenberry, saves #5-6 . . . 1B Rhys Hoskins stretched hitting streak to 9 games; 2 RBI giving him club-high 15 . . . RH Chris Oliver (2-2), won on Saturday, 7-7-0-0-0-6; LH Elniery Garcia (2-2) Sunday; 6-8-3-3-3-6.
Next: RH Roberto Pinto (2-0), 7:05 tonight in Savannah, final game of an 8-game road trip.

Transactions
Reading: LHP Hoby Milner, a 10-game winner in AA last year, activated from the DL in the rehab program at Carpenter Complex . . . Clearwater: RHR Yacksel Rios activated from DL; RHR Will Morris to the Extended Program . . . CF Aaron Brown on DL backdated to April 29 with a right hip strain; OF Carlos Duran to Clearwater from Extended. When a player goes from Extended to the Threshers, he’s kiddingly referred to as a “fence jumper”, as an outfield fence separates the Complex and Bright House Field.

Phun Fact
How many different Phillies sluggers have led the National League in home runs since the franchise was established in 1883? The answer can be found at http://www.phillies.com/alumni.

Please Note
Next post will be Wednesday. Saying good-bye to Clearwater and heading back home in Glen Mills, PA.

 

 

Miami Weekend

 

 

The Phillies chased Malvern Prep’s Cooney in the third inning but five St. Louis relievers closed the door, retiring 19 of 21 to give the Cardinals a 9-3 win yesterday afternoon and a series win, 3-1.

Buchanan fell to 0-5.  According to Elias Sports Bureau, he is the first pitcher in team history to suffer five defeats without a win in the month of April. Kyle Abbott, a lefty, was the last Phillies hurler to begin 0-5 (1992).

Herrera reached base for the 15th consecutive game, something no Phillies rookie has done in April since 1900, according to Elias Sports Bureau.

Rupp got his first triple since 2012 at Clearwater.

While they still weren’t as sharp as a year ago, Diekman and DeFratus didn’t allow a run.  Got to get them back to where they were in 2014.  They are a key component in the future of the club.

Williams, who beat the Marlins, 7-3, on April 21, faces them again tonight in the start of a weekend series in Miami. Then on to Atlanta for three night games starting Monday.
Next weekend, the Phillies are home to the Mets.

Move Over Fred
Assuming Ryan will be back at first base tonight, it will be his 1,299th game at that position.  He’ll pass Fred Luderus who held the record for most games by a Phillies first baseman since his last game, June 23, 1920. Luderus was the captain of the 1915 Phillies who won the franchise’s first pennant that year.

E-Mail Bin
From Ernie: Wondering why Scott Rolen is not on the Phillies Wall of Fame. Can anyone explain why not? Thanks for your time and consideration.

“When we established the Wall of Fame in 1978, we decided that a player needed to be retired three years to be eligible.  The Baseball Hall of Fame requires five years.  We have made exceptions over time, Steve Carlton, Mike Schmidt, John Vukovich, Harry Kalas and Charlie Manuel.

“Scott last played in 2012 which would make him eligible next January when we conduct the fan vote.”

Minor Leagues
Lehigh Valley IronPigs (6-16)
RH Chad Billingsley picked up his first win since April 10, 2013, with the Dodgers as the IronPigs ended a 3-game losing streak, 4-2, over Durham. Chad: 5.2-5-2-0-1-6, HB, BK,  99 pitches, 66 strikes. 2 runs came in the second inning. RF Domonic Brown, a pair of RBI singles.  Crowd of 8,902 was at Coca-Cola Park for the 10:45 a.m. game.  Were eggs benedict served at the concession stands?
Next: RH Phillippe Aumont (1-0) makes his second straight start, 7:15 tonight in Indianapolis.

Reading Fightin Phils (12-7)
Resume play at 7:05 tonight vs. the Portland Sea Dogs. RH Zach Elfin (2-0, 0.00) will start. Reading is riding a 4-game winning streak.

Clearwater Threshers (11-10)
Pounding out 18 hits, the Threshers easily defeated host Dunedin, 8-1. C Willians Astudillo, 3 hits, 2 RBI; .309 average leads the club.  SS Drew Stankiewicz, 3 hits, RBI. WP: RH Colin Kleven (2-1), 6-3-1-1-4-6.
Next: RH David Whitehead (1-2), 6:30 tonight at Dunedin.

Lakewood BlueClaws (10-10)
3B Jonah Arendado hit a walk-off, 2-run homer in the 10th inning off Austin Davis to lift Augusta to a 7-5 win.  Lakewood banged out 15 hits but left 15 runners on base.  The BlueClaws scored 2, 2-out runs in the first inning and tied the game with 3, 2-out runs in the top of the ninth.  DH Rhys Hoskins’ 2-run homer (#4) capped the 3-run rally.  He also had 2 singles and a third RBI. C Deivi Grullon, 3 hits, including a double. CF Carlos Tocci, 2 hits, 2 runs.
Next: RH Ranfi Carimiro (1-2), 7:05 tonight at Savannah.

Extended Spring Training
J. P. Crawford played shortstop for the first time during his rehab from an oblique strain sustained in a minor league spring training game in March.

Today in Phillies History
1883: In Phillies first game ever, Providence Grays pull out a 4-3 victory in Philadelphia’s Recreation Park.  Estimated attendance was 1,200.

1906: 20-year-old LHP John Lush tosses a no-hitter, 6-0, at Brooklyn.  A graduate of Philadelphia’s Girard Preparatory, Lush finishes 18-12 for the season.

1983: Phillies observe 100th anniversary of their first game and 40-year-old 1B Tony Perez collects three hits and drives in five runs in an 11-3 romp over Houston. RHP John Enzmann, 93, the oldest living former Phillie, throws out the ceremonial first pitch.

Phun Fact
Phillies won their first game of the 20th century, 19-17, at Boston and the last game, 6-5, over Montreal at Veterans Stadium. SS Monte Cross hit the Phillies’ first home run of the century; PH Wendell Magee, the last one.

 

Cards Handle Aaron

Aaron has pitched well this season but the Cardinals have his number and they improved to 16-7 against him, 5-2 last night.  The Big Piece hit his 11th career home run in his hometown ballpark.  It was only the 10th given up by the Cardinals staff this season. Howard’s hit four homers in last eight games.

Four-game series ends this afternoon and then the Phillies take a United charter flight to Miami for a weekend series against the Marlins. Since Marlins Park opened in 2011, Phillies are 12-15 there, including 3-6 a year ago.

Phillies enter the final day of April with an 8-14 record.  Club record for most losses in April is 18 in 2002.  Most wins, 18, 2011.

Minor Leagues
Lehigh Valley IronPigs (5-16)
Lost third straight, 9-3, to Durham.  LHP Joely Rodriguez (0-3), 4-10-7-7-2-1. 1B Russ Canzler, 3 hits; RF Domonic Brown, 1-4.
Next: RHP Chad Billingsley (0-1), 10:35 this morning vs. Durham.  Team leaves after the game for Indianapolis.

Reading Fightin Phils (12-7)
LHP Jesse Biddle improved to 3-0 as Reading won its fourth in a row, 6-4, at Richmond.
Biddle’s line: 5-6-4-3-1-3. A year ago he was 3-10 in AA. 3 relievers closed out the game, LH Ethan Stewart, LH Elvis Araujo and RH Nefi Ogando: 4 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 7 SO. 1st save for Ogando. 2B Brodie Greene, single, 2 doubles, 2 runs, 2 RBI.
Next: Day off today with Portland coming to Reading for a weekend series starting tomorrow night.

Clearwater Threshers (10-10)
Not scheduled on Wednesday.
Next: RHP Colin Kleven (1-1), 6:30 tonight at Dunedin.

Lakewood BlueClaws (10-10)
Broke a scoreless tie with 4 runs in the seventh and a 4-1 win at Augusta. WP: LHP Josh Taylor (1-1), 7-3-1-1-2-6. SV: Jesen Therrsen (2). RF Herlis Rodriguez doubled in 2 runs.
Next: RHP Tyler Viza (3-0), 7:05 tonight in Augusta.

Today in Phillies History
1887: Phillies beat New York, 15-9, in the first game played at Broad and Huntington Streets Park, later known as Baker Bowl.

1934: Phillies play their first Sunday game at home.  Because of the Pennsylvania blue laws, organized sports competition on Sundays had been illegal in the state.

Phun Fact
In winning their first pennant 100 years ago, the Phillies pitching staff led the league in earned run average (2.17), complete games (98) and shutouts (20).  Offensively, their 58 home runs were the most.

Not-So-Phun Fact
Of the starting eight from the 2008 World Champion Phillies, Chooch (.228) is the only one above .200; Howard (.180), Utley (.113), Rollins (.185) and Werth (.154).

Rocky Debut

 

 

Severino, a 22-year-old, had a rocky big league debut allowing seven runs in 2.2 innings as the Cardinals easily won the second game of the four-game series last nigh.  In three starts at AAA, he had given up just nine runs.

Once again, walks continued to haunt the Phillies.  They walked six and five scored.

While the offense continues to sputter, two youngsters continue impressive starts.  Freddy had three hits for the third time in his last five games.  Odubel has hit safely in  11 of his last 13 games.

36-year-old Aaron, the Phillies most consistent starter, gets the nod tonight.  Series ends with a 1:45 afternoon game tomorrow.

Minor Leagues
Players of the Week (April 20-26)
Player
SS Malquin Canelo, Lakewood…The 20-year-old went 12-for-26 (.462) with three doubles, a home run, five RBI, four walks, 18 total bases and a .533 OBP. He raised his average 90 points in one week. Canelo recorded five multi-hit games, including each of his last four where he combined to go 9-for-16 (.563). Canelo was signed by Phillies scout Koby Perez as an amateur free agent on April 19, 2012.

Pitcher
LHP Brandon Leibrandt, Clearwater…Leibrandt, a 22-year-old southpaw, continued his dominant start to the season with two strong outings against the Tampa Yankees. On April 21, he shut out the Yankees over seven innings, yielding only five hits while posting a season-high seven strikeouts. Five days later, he met up with Tampa again, this time holding them to just three runs (two earned) on two hits in six innings of work. For the week, Leibrandt went 1-1 with a 1.38 ERA, seven hits and a walk (0.62 WHIP) and 11 strikeouts in 13 innings. He was selected by the Phillies in the sixth round of the 2014 draft and signed by Aaron Jersild.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs (5-15)
Dropped a 3-1 decision to Durham.  LV pitchers gave up 7 walks and 6 hits; for the season, 100 walks in 20 games.  LP: Paul Clemens (0-2), 4-3-2-2-5-9.
Next: LHP Joely Rodriguez (0-1), 7:05 tonight vs. Durham.

Reading Fightin Phils (11-7)

Aaron Nola
RHP Aaron Nola (2-2) retired 21 of 27 hitters in winning, 3-2, at Richmond. His line: 7-5-2-1-0-5. RBI on a squeeze bunt. CF Ramon Quinn, fifth double, third triple, boosting average to .352. SV: Stephen Shackleford (3).
Next: LHP Jesse Biddle (2-0), 10:45 this morning at Richmond.

Clearwater Threshers (10-10)
Lost, 8-7, to Tampa with each team scoring 4 runs in the ninth inning. LF Andrew Pullin, 2 singles, 2 doubles (7), 2 RBI.  C Andrew Knapp, single, triple, 3 RBI. 3B Mitch Walding, first HR.
Next: idle today; at Dunedin on Thursday.

Lakewood BlueClaws (9-10)
RHP Ricardo Pinto (2-0) was the winner, 3-1, at Augusta, 7-3-1-1-0-5.  BlueClaws had 11 hits.  LF Cord Sandberg, 3 hits; CF Carlos Tocci, 3 hits, his eighth multi-hit game.  19-year-old C Deivi Grullon, 2 hits, 3 RBI.  RHP Matt Hockenberry, 4th save.
Next: LHP Josh Taylor (0-1), 7:05 tonight in Augusta.

Transactions
Reading RHR Ryan O’Sullivan placed on DL with right hand fracture . . . Replacing him is RHR Lee Ridenhour from Clearwater.

Today in Phillies History
1981: Needing three strikeouts to reach 3,000, LHP Steve Carlton strikes out the side in the first inning against the Expos in FOUR minutes at Veterans Stadium.  3B Tim Wallach as #3,000.

Phun Fact
Jim Bunning won the first game at Veterans Stadium and returned to throw out the first ball: on the 10th anniversary if the Vet (1981); when his uniform number was retired (2001); the final season opener in the Vet history (2003), and World Series Game #5 at Citizens Bank Park (2009).  That has to be a record….most ceremonial first pitches.

 

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