It's a simple formula, really. Have your pitching staff hold down the other
team's offense, while your offense tees off on the opposing pitchers. If teams
could use that formula every time out, they'd be pretty well assured of success.
For the Reading Phillies, the formula worked perfectly Friday night as they
exploded for an 11-2 win over New Hampshire to even their best-of-five series at
J.C. Ramirez threw six shutout innings, allowing just one hit and walking
two. Ramirez didn't give up a hit until the sixth inning and three Reading
relievers were able to keep the New Hampshire offense at bay over the final
three innings to get the win for Ramirez.
New Hampshire starter Nestor Molina had made just five starts at Double-A
this season, but posted a 0.41 ERA in those starts. The game had all the makings
of a pitcher's duel that would last all night, but Reading figured out Molina in
the third and hit him around for six runs. Tuffy Gosewisch led off the third
with a double and with the game looking like a low-scoring affair, Reading
manager Mark Parent was intent on getting every run he could and had Tim Kennelly bunt Gosewisch over to third. From there, Troy Hanzawa doubled to drive
in Gosewisch to give the Phillies a 1-0 lead. With Hanzawa on third, Reading
used back-to-back singles, an error, a passed ball and a walk to take a 3-0 lead
and load the bases with two outs. Derrick Mitchell turned out to be the biggest
bat in the R-Phils attack and delivered a triple to clear the bases and put
Reading up 6-0. Molina then struck out Gosewisch to end the inning, but the
damage had already been done and Molina wouldn't return for the fourth inning.
B.J. LaMura came on in the fourth and was greeted by Kennelly who singled to
right to open the inning. LaMura then threw wildly to first base on a pickoff
attempt, allowing Kennelly to go to second. After striking out the next two
hitters, it looked like LaMura would work out of the jam, but Ozzie Chavez
singled to right to drive home Kennelly and put Reading up 7-0.
With that buffer, Ramirez was breezing through the Fisher Cats lineup and
wound up striking out six hitters in his six innings of work.
The Reading offense went back to work with one out in the seventh. Three
straight singles loaded the bases to chase reliever Rey Gonzalez from the mound
in favor of Evan Crawford. Matt Rizzotti drove in a run with a ground ball,
bringing Mitchell back to the plate with runners on second and third. Mitchell
doubled to drive in two more runs and Gosewisch followed with another double to
bring home Mitchell and make it an 11-0 game.
New Hampshire would get RBI singles from Moises Sierra in the eighth and John Tolisano in the ninth to avoid the shutout and make the final score 11-2.
The two teams will play game three Saturday night in Reading, starting at
7:05. Austin Hyatt (12-6, 3.85) gets the start for Reading, with Drew Hutchison
(3-0, 1.20) going for New Hampshire. Game four would be Sunday night, also in