2016 Spring Training

Knapp’s Three-Run Blast Powers Phils to 6-5 Win

Knapp's bat has been scorching hot since his promotion to Reading last summer. Photo by Jay Floyd

Knapp’s bat has been scorching hot since his promotion to Reading last summer. Photo by Jay Floyd

Andrew Knapp‘s three-run bomb off Branden Pinder was the difference as the Phillies plated six in the sixth and defeated the Yankees 6-5 in this afternoon’s Spring Training contest.

The Phils’ six-run outburst began with singles from Freddy Galvis and Odubel Herrera followed by a walk by Maikel Franco off pitcher Chad Green. Brock Stassi plated Galvis on a sacrifice fly to make the game 1-1. Cedric Hunter  drove in Herrera two batters later on a sac fly to take the lead before David Lough drove in pinch-runner Angelys Nina for a 3-1 score. Pinder replaced Green and Knapp hit a three-run shot on a 2-1 count to make the game 6-1.

The Yankees would score two earned in the top of the seventh off of Greg Burke and then would add two more off of Ernesto Frieri in the eighth. Despite their stumbles, Burke picked up the win, Frieri got the hold and Jeanmar Gomez picked up the save in the ninth.

Small-Sample Notes: Knapp is now hitting .571 with a 1.810 OPS after the first week of spring training – very much a small sample size but the 24-year catcher is very much the Phillies’ hottest hitter. Knapp had hit .360 with 11 HR after a June 26 call-up to Reading. Lough continues to make a push to win a spot in the outfield, adding a walk, single, RBI, and run today with his average at .333 following the first week. Franco continues his own hot streak, going 1-2 with a walk, improving his average of .385. Brock Stassi continues to make a positive impression, upping his average to .400 after going one for two.

Burke and Frieri have both struggled in their appearances with 7.71 and 6.75 ERA respectively. Daniel Stumpf, who is locked in a battle with James Russell to become the team’s left-handed specialist, struck out two in 1.2 innings.

Injury updates: Per Ryan Lawrence, Cody Asche has begun hitting off a tee while Aaron Altherr heads to Philly to get his wrist examined Monday.

With the win, the Phillies improved to 3-3-1. Brett Olberholtzer and Vincent Velasquez will start tomorrow in Bradenton against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

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