Phillies Minor League Review: June 29-July 5

Players of the Week

Player INF/OF Tyler Henson, Lehigh Valley...Henson, 27, batted .444 with a home run, 10 RBI, six runs scored, five doubles, four stolen bases and a triple last week on his way to Phillies Minor League Player of the Week honors. Henson went 3-4 with a home run, double and four RBI on June 30, setting the stage for his productive week. He went 10-26 in the four games that followed, recording multiple hits in three of them and multiple RBI in two. He raised his batting average 31 points in just seven games from June 29 to July 5, and was also named an International League All-Star. Henson was signed by the Phillies as a minor league free agent in 2011 after originally being signed by the Orioles and Jim Richardson following his selection in the fifth round of the 2006 draft.

Pitcher - LHP Adam Loewen, Lehigh Valley...The 31-year-old Loewen was named Phillies Minor League Pitcher of the Week for the second time in three weeks after four dominant relief appearances for the IronPigs. In those four games, he combined to throw 6.0 innings, allowing just one hit and no runs or walks while striking out nine and collecting two saves. The southpaw has not allowed a run since May 17, and in his last 8.1 innings has surrendered one walk, one hit and has struck out 14 batters. Loewen was signed by the Phillies in April of 2014 as a minor league free agent, and was originally signed by the Orioles and Dave Jennings after being selected in the first round by Baltimore in the 2002 draft.

Lehigh Vslley IronPigs - International League North Division…36-49, 5th place…The IronPigs won six of their seven games last week, sweeping the first-place Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders in a three-game set before taking three of four from the second-place Rochester Red Wings. After starting 4-13 against IL North opponents, Lehigh Valley has pulled to .500 against divisional foes for the first time this season.

Top hitting performers - INF/OF Tyler Henson was named Phillies Minor League Player of the Week after batting .444 in seven games with a team-high seven extra-base hits (five doubles, triple, home run) 10 RBI, six runs scored, four stolen bases and a 1.196 OPS…OF Aaron Altherr was 9-28 (.321) with five RBI, five walks, three doubles, a triple and six runs scored…C Gabriel Lino hit safely in all five of his games, batting .364 with four doubles, four RBI and four runs scored.

Top pitching performers - LHP Adam Loewen appeared in four games in relief, combining to toss 6.0 scoreless innings with just one hit allowed and nine strikeouts. His performance earned him Phillies Minor League Pitcher of the Week for the second time in three weeks…RHP Jason Berken turned in his longest outing since 2007 on July 5, tossing 8.2 innings of two-run ball to help Lehigh Valley to a win over Rochester...RHP Aaron Nola made two starts for the IronPigs, combining to throw 11.0 innings while allowing three earned runs (2.45 ERA) and striking out 10 batters…RHP David Buchanan lasted 6.1 innings and allowed just one run in his first triple-A start since May 17.

Reading Fightin Phils - Eastern League Eastern Division …43-39, 2nd place…Reading continues to put pressure on the Trenton Thunder for the top spot in the division after a 4-3 week which included a series win over New Britain. Reading currently sits just three games back of first place as they round out a series with the Thunder during the day on Monday.

Top hitting performers - OF Kelly Dugan is now hitting .341 with Reading after collecting 11 hits in 31 at-bats for the Fightins last week. He has multiple hits in 10 of 21 games since his promotion…1B Brock Stassi not only hit .364, but also walked 11 times in seven games, giving him a .576 on-base percentage for the week. He also scored six runs for the Fightins…3B Harold Martinez collected a couple of three-hit games on his way to a .389 batting average and four RBI in six games…C Andrew Knapp drove in eight runs while batting .316. Since being promoted to double-A, Knapp has hit safely in all eight games and has three multi-RBI games.

Top pitching performers - RHP Ben Lively surrendered just one run on six hits over 5.0 innings of work against New Britain on July 1…RHP Colton Murray made two multi-inning relief appearances, combining to throw 5.0 innings with no runs allowed and three strikeouts. Murray has held opponents scoreless in seven of his last eight outings.

Clearwater Threshers - Florida State League North Division…8-3, 1st place, 45-36 overall… The Threshers are in the middle of a hot streak, as they won five of seven games last week and have taken 14 of their last 17 dating back to June 17. They have not lost a series since being swept by Tampa June 4-6.

Top hitting performers - OF Andrew Pullin belted two home runs, drove in 10 runs and scored seven more while batting .323 over seven games. His home runs came on consecutive days, and he also recorded eight of his 10 RBI in those two games…C Chace Numata capped his week with consecutive three-hit games, helping him to a .357 average…C Willians Astudillo batted .348 with a home run, six RBI and three runs scored…1B Rhys Hoskins collected eight hits, walked four times, scored five runs and knocked in three more in seven games.

Top pitching performers - RHP Yacksel Rios pitched to a 1.80 ERA (two earned runs in 10.0 innings) and 0.70 WHIP (five hits, two walks) in his two starts combined. Opponents hit just .139 against him…RHP Victor Arano earned the win in his lone start after scattering four hits and allowing just one run in 6.0 innings July 1 against Tampa…LHP Matt Imhof threw 6.0 scoreless frames and yielded only one hit to Tampa in his start on July 3.

Lakewood BlueClaws - South Atlantic League Northern Division…5-6, T-4th place, 38-41 overall… Lakewood lost four straight contests to begin the week, but rebounded to win their series finale with Delmarva and the series opener with Hagerstown to salvage an otherwise tough week. The offense has been a bright a spot for the BlueClaws, scoring five runs or more in each of the last four games.

Top hitting performers - 1B Kyle Martin, the Phillies fourth-round pick in the 2015 draft, led the team with five extra-base hits (four doubles and a triple) and 16 total bases last week. He hit .357 with six runs scored…INF Damek Tomscha hit a home run and added three doubles, helping him to a .360/.429/.600 slash line last week with four RBI…LF Cord Sandberg was 8-24 (.333) with three RBI and two runs scored.

Top pitching performers - LHP Austin Davis came out of the bullpen for 4.2 innings and did not allow a run on June 29. He followed that up with a 3.0-inning, one-run relief appearance on July 3…RHP Tyler Viza struck out seven batters during a 7.2-inning, two-run quality start against Delmarva…LHP Elniery Garcia did not allow a run and surrendered just five hits in 7.0 innings during his start on July4…LHP Joey DeNato struck out three and allowed just one hit in 3.2 innings in relief.

Williamsport Crosscutters - New York-Penn League Pinckney Division…13-3, 1st place…It took Williamsport 16 games-just about a quarter of their entire season-to drop back-to-back games. That is how good the Crosscutters have been in the early part of the 2015 season. They won four more games last week and already lead the Pinckney Division by six full games over the Auburn Doubledays.

Top hitting performers - The Phillies 10th round pick in 2015, 2B Josh Tobias, posted four-multi-hit games as he batted .375 with a home run and six RBI for the Crosscutters…C Gregori Rivero hit .333 with a home run, three doubles, two RBI and a .667 slugging percentage.

Top pitching performers -  RHP Jose Taveras lasted 6.0 strong innings and allowed just a run on two hits while striking out six in his start last week…RHP Alejandro Arteaga also allowed one run on two hits and struck out six in his 5.0-inning start against Auburn…RHP Franklyn Kilome let one unearned run cross the plate in 5.0 innings of work on July 3. He has allowed just one earned run in his first 16.2 innings this season (0.54 ERA).

GCL Phillies - Gulf Coast League, Northwest Division…9-2, 1st place… The Phillies started and ended the week with three wins, sandwiching a lone loss to the GCL Braves in between as they continue their strong start to the season. Pitching has certainly been a focal point during this hot stretch, as the team pitched two shutouts and had two more games with just one run allowed. They have surrendered only 24 runs in 11 games this season, which is fewest in the league by nine runs.

Top hitting performers - 1B Luis Encarnacion had 10 hits in 20 at-bats, including a home run and a triple. He drove in five runs and tallied 15 total bases…LF Cornelius Randolph, the Phillies first-round selection in the 2015 draft, hit safely in all but one of his six games. He doubled three times, drove in seven runs and reached base at a .423 clip…CF Juan Luis hit .294 with three runs, three stolen bases and a pair of doubles.

Top pitching performers -  RHP Sam McWilliams started his season with 6.0-inning, two-hit, scoreless performance on June 30 against the GCL Astros…LHP Ranger Suarez has not yet allowed a run this season in 11.0 innings following a 6.0-inning scoreless start on July 3…RHP Ismael Cabrera made one start and appeared once in relief, combining for 5.0 scoreless frames with eight strikeouts.