The “really big question” is why Zach Warren is still pitching in low A ball in the Sally League? Last night he struck out the side swinging in the ninth inning to get the save in Lakewood’s 4-2 win in first game of the best-of-three semi finals against Kannapolis. He is now 16 of 17 in save opportunities this season. He has struck out eight in his last three innings and 29 in his last 12 innings over 10 games.
I have never seen strikeout numbers that Warren has put up this season. He now has 103 strikeouts in 57.2 innings out of the BlueClaws pen. He just keeps getting better and better. You can bet he will be out there when the series resumes in Lakewood on Friday night. The series resumes then after a travel day. Watch Zach get an out in 2018 minor league spring training HERE. He sure looked good in a Phillies uniform!
In other playoff news, the Clearwater Threshers blew a four-run, first inning lead and lost Game Two of the best-of-three game semi-final series, 6-5, to the Daytona Tortugas. The game was actually tied 3-3 on earned runs but the Threshers were charged with 3 unearned runs and the Tortugas two unearned runs in a poorly played game.
The difference in the game was a throwing error by shortstop Arquimedes Gamboa with two out in the bottom the first inning. The Tortugas went on to score two unearned runs in the inning. Gamboa has been a major disappointnment this season hitting only .214 with a team low .582 OPS. He will get a chance to redeem himself since he has been selected by the “experts” in the Phillies Front Office to play in the Arizona Fall League. We may never know why though since Farm Director Joe Jordan had enough of it and resigned on Tuesday. He then left for his home in Oklahoma.
We watched on MiLB-TV, the Lehigh Valley IronPigs go down 3-2 to the SWB Railriders last night in the first game of the best-of-five semi-finals in the International League playoffs. Of the ten players in the Pigs starting lineup only two, Mitch Walding and Andrew Knapp, were originally signed by the Phillies. We will watch tonight though just to watch Cole Irvin pitch. Cole led all AAA pitchers in baseball in wins, 14, ERA, 2.57 and WHIP, 1.05 this season. The experts in Phillies Front Office at the time refused to call him up choosing instead to call-up Ranger Suarez and Enyel De la Santos from the AAA starting rotation for spot starts in the MLB.
We soldier on as the 2018 minor league season is finally coming to an end. So far the four Phillies teams who have made the post-season have won two games and lost three. Let’s see what Clearwater in an elimination game and Lehigh Valley can do tonight.