Reading Beats Trenton 5-2 at Citizens Bank Park

The Reading Phillies defeated the Trenton Thunder by a score of 5-3 in front of 5,113 fans at Citizens Bank Park. The teams played the game before starting a three game series in Trenton starting Tuesday night. Chris Rojas pitched well in his 5 2/3 innings of work, while Travis Minix recorded his fourth save pitching a scoreless ninth for Reading.

Trenton starter Ramon Ramirez, who was activated right before the game after being demoted from Triple A Columbus, was highly ineffective in his three innings of work. The R-Phils put all five of their runs up against Ramirez and Thunder manager Bill Masse was not pleased with Ramirez's performance after the game. "Ramon was not sharp in a lot of areas and he has a lot to work on. We will get after it with him tomorrow because we are going to get him right." said Masse.

The Thunder bullpen duo of Jeremy King and Charlie Manning blanked the R-Phils for six innings but Reading held on to preserve a 5-3 win. Reading was aided in their quest to hold on by a mental mistake by Thunder second baseman Gabe Lopez. Lopez reached base on an infield single to lead off the sixth and reached second on Rojas' wild pitch before being picked off when Melky Cabrera reached first on a walk. Lopez put his head down and started toward third, apparently thinking there was a runner on first. When Trent Pratt threw the ball back to Rojas, he wheeled and fired to Danny Gonzalez who tagged Lopez out and in effect, took a run off the board for Trenton when the next batter, Shelley Duncan doubled to the left field corner. That would have made it 5-3, had Lopez had remembered how many runners were on base.

Trenton got on the board in the sixth to cut the Reading lead to 5-2 at the time, before adding one more in the eighth. Duncan's big blow in the sixth made the game interesting, but Andy Cannizaro's big night made it even closer. Cannizaro went 3-for-3 with a walk and his single in the eighth scored Eric Duncan to make it 5-3 game, but Trenton would get no closer. Cannizaro said afterward that he enjoyed the chance to play on this big of a stage. "I'm glad the front office was able to get this done and guys were able to see what it's like up here. What they are working for." Cannizaro certainly relished the spotlight.

Rojas was the story for Reading as all three Trenton runs came off the bullpen. Rojas kept the Thunder hitters mystified all night until he tired in the sixth, as he neared the 100 pitch mark. Rojas even managed to remain calm pitching on a big a stage like Citizens Bank Park. This was the first time the R-Phils have played in Philadelphia in their 39-year affiliation with the Phillies. Tom Filer, Reading's pitching coach, was proud of his pitcher. "Rojas set the tone for us tonight. He kept his composure, warmed up well in the bullpen, and took what he had in the bullpen out to the mound with him." said Filer.

The R-Phils will hope for an equally dominating pitching performance when they travel to Trenton to continue the series tomorrow night.

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