Reading Sweep Continues Hot Start

The 2011 season is off to a good start for the Reading Phillies. A sweep of a double-header against Akron puts the R-Phils at 8-3.

The Reading Phillies walked into town on Thursday fresh off a 5-2 road trip. On Sunday, they walked-off the field with a sweep of their double-header.

Michael Spidale roped a game-winning RBI single in the bottom of the eighth inning of game two, and the R-Phils earned a sweep of their twin bill against the Akron Aeros on Sunday afternoon in Baseballtown – winning game two by a score of 5-4 and game one by a score of 5-2.

Spidale had one hit in game one of the doubleheader, and in game two, the Illinois native had one hit as he entered the bottom of the eighth inning with a chance to be the hero -- he proved to be just that.

R-Phils center fielder Derrick Mitchell, who homered to tie the game 5-5 in the bottom of the fifth inning, led off the eighth with a single. Fidel Hernandez followed with a sacrifice bunt, which moved Mitchell to second base representing the go-ahead run. After a Freddy Galvis flyout, it was Spidale's turn. Last year's team MVP stepped to the plate and won the game with his single to center field -- giving the R-Phils their eighth win in 11 tries this season.

Spidale, along with the rest of the R-Phils offense was impressive on Sunday. And, the club has been impressive as a whole so far this year. Reading entered play tops in the Eastern League with a .297 batting average and a league-best 11 home runs – six more than any other team. Reading (8-3) also entered play with the most runs scored in the league (52), and the most hits (93). They added four more home runs and 10 more runs on Sunday.

Cody Overbeck continued his assault on Double-A pitching. Overbeck, 24, ripped a home run in both games of Sunday's doubleheader and now has an Eastern League-best five home runs and 13 RBIs. Last season he hit 13 home runs as a member of the R-Phils, after hitting 11 with Clearwater to begin the season.

Justin De Fratus (2-0, 4.50 ERA) tossed the final two innings of game two to earn the victory. De Fratus, a member of the Phillies 40-man roster, walked three batters and fanned one en-route to the win. The winner in game one was J.C. Ramirez (2-0, 2.02), who was sharp for Reading in the opener of the twin bill. The Nicaraguan native allowed two runs on four hits over 6.1 innings to earn his second win in two tries this season.

On Monday, the R-Phils will send RHP Austin Hyatt to the mound for game one of the two-game set against the Erie Seawolves. Hyatt, a native of Atlanta, GA, has allowed just two runs in 10 innings pitched this season, while fanning nine batters. Originally selected in the 15th round of the 2009 draft by the Phillies, Hyatt, 24, was the Florida State League's Most Valuable Pitcher a season ago.

RHP Jacob Turner (0-0, 2.08) gets the nod for Erie in Monday's opening contest. Turner, 19, will be making his third start of the season when he gets the ball on Monday. In his last outing, Turner allowed three runs on seven hots over seven innings but did not factor in the decision. The St. Charles, MO native is ranked as the best prospect in the Tigers organization by Baseball America.

Phillers... Derrick Mitchell launched his second home run of the season in game two to tie the game at 4-4... R-Phils game two starter Josh Zeid allowed four runs on four hits over just 1.2 innings... Tyson Brummett tossed 3.1 scoreless innings in game two, fanning four batters... Harold Garcia went 2-for-3 with his second home run of the season in game one... Garcia and Freddy Galvis each had a stolen base in game one... Matt Rizzotti failed to register a hit in six at-bats combined on Sunday.



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