Three of the Philadelphia Phillies farm teams qualified for the postseason this year; the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, the Clearwater Threshers and the Lakewood Blueclaws.
Unfortunately, all three met their demise the playoffs, the last of which was the Blueclaws who fell 3-1 in South Atlantic League championship series.
2017 second-round pick Spencer Howard did have a notable performance in the Division League series, tossing a no-hitter against Kannapolis. He struck out nine and allowed only one walk:
We leave you tonight with the final out.
Congrats again, Spencer Howard, on a no-hitter. We’ll see you in the Finals! pic.twitter.com/lPwjvjyAXS
— Lakewood BlueClaws (@BlueClaws) September 8, 2018
The IronPigs were eliminated by Scranton Wilkes-Barre, which was once upon a time the Triple-A affiliate of the Phillies organization. The IronPigs lost in four games, with a Game 3 start by Drew Anderson leading to the team’s only postseason victory.
Clearwater fell to Daytona two games to one in their division series. Daniel Brito and Grenny Cumana did both bat .364 for Clearwater in the series.
All in all, it was a very successful season for all three of these teams. The IronPigs may have fared better if half of their roster wasn’t called up to the big leagues when rosters expanded, but winning at the major league level will always be the organization’s No. 1 priority.
Looking ahead, Lehigh Valley should be good again next year, while Reading should have a bounce-back year if top pitching prospects Adonis Medina and Sixto Sanchez join the rotation. Clearwater will benefit from acquiring most of Lakewood’s talented pitchers, and Lakewood will get a look at 2018 first-round pick Alec Bohm.
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