New Hampshire Hardball

Fisher Cats 7, Fightin Phils 5

READING, Pa. – After two straight shutout losses at the hands of the Reading Fightin Phils, New Hampshire bats showed up in a big way on Thursday night at FirstEnergy Stadium. The Fisher Cats (6-9, 37-47) totaled 16 hits in their 7-5 win over Reading (Philadelphia Phillies, 9-6, 38-46) to snap a three-game losing streak.


Eight of the nine Fisher Cats had a hit in Thursday’s game, and six had multi-hit games. Rafael Lantigua set the tone with a 2-for-5 night in the leadoff spot, blasting a two-run homer in the third inning to put New Hampshire up, 2-1.

The big fly was Lantigua’s second of the season and ended a streak of 20.0 consecutive scoreless innings for New Hampshire, tied for the longest stretch without scoring this season.

From there, the floodgates opened. Zac Cook singled to the wall in right field, and Addison Barger came home to score from first. The Fisher Cats led, 3-1, after three innings. Cook finished 2-for-4 in his eighth multi-hit game of the season.

Reading chipped away, though, scoring a run in the fourth and the sixth to tie the game, 3-3. Johan Camargo, making his third consecutive MLB rehab start with Reading, drove in the Phils’ second run. He scored the tying run on Jhailyn Ortiz ground-rule double on a ball that Lantigua lost in the stadium lights in left field.

Sebastian Espino (3-for-4) started off the seventh with his first triple of the season on another fly ball that was lost in the light. Lantigua drove him home, and Barger notched his first Double-A RBI with a single in the next at bat. Barger is off to a scalding-hot start with the Fisher Cats, going 7-for-13 in his first three games. He was 3-for-5 with two runs scored on Thursday.

Second baseman Davis Schneider (2-for-4) and shortstop Luis De Los Santos (2-for-4) also had multi-hit games. The team’s 16 hits were their third-most in a game all season and most since July 1 at Portland (19). De Los Santos had a fantastic night at short, too. He made a sliding catch over his shoulder for the first out of the bottom of the ninth, among other sharp plays.

Reading had 11 hits of their own and scored two more runs in the bottom of the seventh. From there, Parker Caracci silenced the Fightins bats with a 2.1-inning save, his fifth of the season. The righty from Ole Miss threw a season-high innings and pitches (39).


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