Baseball Betsy and I watched an interesting game on Monday at Bright House. The game resulted in a 4-3 win for the Phillies over a college team from Japan.
The Phillies team was made up of players from the minor league camp primarily from teams from the rookie and A ball levels of last season and pitchers from the major league camp with the exception of closer Matt Hockenberry. He picked up the save by getting the third out in the top of the ninth with the potential tying run on second base. Watch HERE.
At the plate it was the bat of third baseman Mitch Walding, who hit a solo home run in the second inning, watch HERE. Later a double by centerfielder Herlis Rodriguez, watch HERE, scored on a homer by catcher Deivi Grullon, watch HERE. These three Phillies farmhands provided the difference in the win.
One of the old saying in development baseball is to finish strong each season. Both Walding and Grullon did that in 2015. For the Clearwater Threshers, Walding hit .317 in August and in his final six games of the season in September went 6 for 19. For Lakewood, Grullon hit .301 in August and .359 over his last ten games of the 2015 season.
Both Walding and Grullon finished the 2015 season strong and on Monday got off to great starts with homers in the first game of the 2016 pre-season.