Minors Report: 'Claws Starters Get No Support

The Phillies minor league system saw their record fall to 3-9 through the first three games of the minor league season. Saturday saw some strong pitching, but there wasn't much hitting to back up the efforts.

Columbus 4, Scranton 3 (0-2)

Starter Jeremy Cummings (0-1, 9.00) was touched up for four runs over four innings of work as Scranton lost the first end of a double-header. Brian Sanches pitched two shutout innings in relief, but the Red Barons offense was unable to catch up to the Clippers.

Danny Sandoval and Shawn Garrett each had two hits for the Red Barons.

Scranton 4 (1-2), Columbus 3

Ryan Fleming's three-run homerun helped pace the Red Barons to gain a split of their opening weekend double-header in Columbus. Catcher Carlos Ruiz had two hits and drove in the other Scranton run, putting his season average at .429 (3-for-7).

Seung Lee started and threw four innings, giving up just one run on five hits and a walk. Yoel Hernandez (1-0, 0.00) gave up two hits over two innings, but kept the Clippers off the board to get the win. Ryan Cameron walked the bases loaded in the ninth, but then shut down the Clippers to get the save.

Bowie 2, Reading 1 (0-3)

The Reading Phillies, who were looking for a big season in the Eastern League, have gotten off to an 0-3 start. Four Reading errors led to two unearned runs for the Bay Sox. Carlos Leon committed two errors, while Talley Haines and Peter Bergeron also had miscues.

Starter Giovany Gonzalez threw five shutout innings, giving up just two hits and two walks, while striking out seven hitters. Matt Sweeney (0-1, 0.00) gave up an unearned run in 1/3 of an inning to take the loss.

Dunedin 3, Clearwater 1 (2-1)

Mike Costanzo hit his first homerun of the season, but it was too little as the Threshers lost for the first time in 2006. Clearwater had just three hits, the other two coming from Brad Harman and Peeter Ramos.

J.A. Happ gave up three earned runs over 5 2/3 innings, allowing six hits and a walk, while striking out six hitters. Joe Bisenius and Andy Baldwin pitched 3 1/3 innings of shutout ball, allowing just one hit over the stretch.

Lexington 1, Lakewood 0 (0-2)

Lakewood out hit Lexington, but came up on the short end of a 1-0 score in the first end of a double-header. Matt Maloney (0-1, 1.50) allowed just one run on three hits and a walk over six innings. He struck out five and picked off a base runner on first base. The BlueClaws committed three errors - two on Welinson Baez and another on Tim Kennelly.

Lexington 1, Lakewood 0 (0-3)

In the nightcap, the BlueClaws managed just two hits off three Lexington starters.

Carlos Carrasco (0-1, 1.50) gave up three hits and no walks through six innings, but suffered the loss. He struck out seven hitters.

Minor Matters:  The Red Barons have definitely struggled in the early going. As a team, they're hitting just .200 and have a team ERA of 8.18, with opponents hitting .4-2 off their staff through their first three games... The Red Barons are the only Phillies farm club not to have made an error yet this season... The Reading pitching staff was supposed to be good, but it's been the relievers who have stood out so far. The Reading bullpen hasn't allowed a run in 13 innings of work this season. The starters meanwhile, have a combined ERA of 4.73 on the season, even though Gonzalez didn't give up a run in Saturday's outing... The R-Phils hadn't committed an error, until they exploded for four miscues on Saturday... Only three Reading hitters, with 10 or more at bats - Michael Bourn (.308), Brian Hansen (.200) and Jim Rushford (.200) - have averages over the .200 mark. As a team, Reading is hitting just .165 through three games... Clearwater starters have a combined 2.41 ERA, with 24 strikeouts in 18 2/3 innings of work and opponents are hitting just .203 against the Threshers rotation... Meanwhile, in Lakewood, the starters are 0-2, but have put up some impressive stats; The rotation's ERA is 1.00 through 18 innings of work and they have recorded 19 strikeouts with just four walks. Opponents are hitting just .172 against them. Organization wide, the Phillies minor league teams are hitting just .182 (62-for-341). The minor league ERA is 3.76.


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