May 19, 2017
By: Steve Degler
It certainly looks like Phillies fans in the Lehigh Valley should have a fun summer at the ballpark. Coca-Cola Park, that is. While things at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia aren’t going so well, the teams in the Phillies minor league system are playing some great baseball.
Entering play on May 18, the Phillies four full-season teams (Lehigh Valley, Reading, Clearwater and Lakewood) had a combined .599 winning percentage, the best of all 30 Major League organizations. Thanks to a franchise-record 12-game winning streak, the IronPigs had a lot to do with that early season success.
Lehigh Valley has been anchored by a very stingy bullpen that has an ERA well under 3.00 and has blown just one save. Switch-pitcher Pat Venditte and lefty Hoby Milner have been unscored upon so far this season.
The Pigs won a dozen straight in a variety of ways: three were by 1-0 scores (including victories nine and ten in the streak); four total shutouts; three wins in extra innings (games five and seven ended by Dylan Cozens home runs); comebacks from five runs down and four runs down on consecutive nights in Rochester; two were by a pitcher (Thomas Eshelman) making his first two Triple-A starts; four of the victories came in a pair of doubleheader sweeps against Buffalo. Whew!! Lots of exciting baseball!
There are still just over 100 games left on the Lehigh Valley schedule. Many things with this Lehigh Valley team can, and probably will, change before the regular season ends on Labor Day. It’s a talented team that will hopefully challenge for a championship. If you are a Phillies fan, get to Coca-Cola Park and check out the future of your team. It will be well worth the trip. And remember, if you can’t make it to the ballpark, we’ve got you covered all season long on Service Electric.