Minor League Report - April 25, 2004

We've got a look at Ed Yarnall's debut with the Red Barons. Plus, the Reading Phillies split a double-header in Trenton. Clearwater and Lakewood continue to struggle; The Threshers scored thanks only to one of the strangest innings you'll ever see and in Lakewood, it was another tough outing for a starter.

AAA Scranton Wilkes-Barre Red Barons: Ed Yarnall's Scranton debut wasn't stunning, but it could have been worse. Yarnall worked himself into a jam in the fifth inning Saturday and left after 4 1/3 innings of work with the bases loaded. Shane Bowers came on in relief and allowed a sacrifice fly to plate one run and then got a weak fly ball to end the inning without any further damage. Yarnall's main problem was control; He walked three hitters on the day.

Last Saturday (April 17), Mark Budzinski went 4-6 with a walk and two runs scored. Since then, it's been down hill. In 25 at bats since then, Budzinski has just four hits (.160) and his season average has dropped below the Mendoza Line to .190.

AA Reading Phillies: Scratch Matt Squires from the list of Reading's untouched pitchers. Squires suffered through his first bad outing of the season Saturday in Trenton, allowing three earned runs in one inning of work and taking the loss. Squires is now 0-1, 3.86 on the season with one save. Gavin Floyd is now the only Reading pitcher with a 0.00 ERA. Floyd's latest start was limited to one inning because rains forced Friday night's game with Trenton to be suspended until Saturday.

Because of the suspension, Reading needed an emergency starter and turned to Eddie Candelario. While it was Candelario's first start of the season, he started 13 games last year for Trenton when he was a member of the Red Sox organization.

If you're interested in listening to Reading Phillies baseball on the internet, this is your week. SportsJuice.com will be carrying some Reading games starting with Monday night's game against Portland. Check their web site for information on how to listen to the game and for the full schedule and yes, it's free.

A Clearwater Threshers: The ninth inning of Clearwater's game on Saturday was one of the strangest you'll see. Edgar Cruz and Chris Roberson led off the inning with singles. Cruz and Roberson each had two hits in the game accounting for all of Clearwater's four hits. A ground ball advanced the runners and then a passed ball on a strike out allowed one run to score. After a walk, another passed ball brought in the second run of the inning. A ground ball brought home the third run and finally, it was a wild pitch that brought home the fourth run. Clearwater finished the day with just four hits and two walks, but pushed across four runs in their 9-4 loss to Sarasota.

Josh Paddock (0-2, 8.10) started the year strong, but has allowed five earned runs in his last two outings, covering just one full inning of work. Paddock was hurt by an error on Carlos Leon that led to two unearned runs in his last outing.

A Lakewood BlueClaws: Abreu really hurt the BlueClaws on Saturday. Tony Abreu, younger brother of Phillies outfielder Bobby Abreu, went 1-3 with a three-run homerun Saturday as Columbus beat Lakewood 6-2. It was Abreu's first homerun of the season. The Columbus Catfish are the South Atlantic League affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Lakewood's starters continue to struggle. Erick Arteaga was hit for five earned runs in 6 1/3 innings Saturday pushing his ERA to 5.19 on the season. BlueClaws starters are 3-6, 5.12 on the season. Luckily, Joe Wilson (1-2, 2.57) and Scott Mathieson (1-0, 3.00) are off to good starts or Lakewood would really be in trouble.

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