Manchester, NH – Austin Martin scored three runs and Casey Lawrence tossed five shutout innings as the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Toronto Blue Jays Double-A affiliate) beat the Reading Fightin Phils (Philadelphia Phillies) 5-4 at Delta Dental Stadium.
Martin, the Blue Jays first-round pick from a year ago, finished 2-for-2 with two walks. He now leads the Double-A Northeast League in on-base percentage.
Lawrence (W, 1-0), who is the all-time wins leader in Fisher Cats (30-36) history, allowed just two hits and two walks over his five frames. He now has 25 career victories with New Hampshire.
The Fisher Cats took the early lead in the first inning against Fightin Phils starter Adam Leverett (L, 0-3). Austin Martin led off with a single, and with Chavez Young batting, stole second. After Young struck out and Otto Lopez grounded out, LJ Talley lined a single to right to put New Hampshire ahead 1-0.
In the third, Martin tripled with one out, and Young followed with a sacrifice fly to make it a 2-0 Fisher Cats lead.
New Hampshire added three more runs in the fifth against Leverett. The first batter, Reggie Pruitt, created a run on his own. After stroking a single, he stole second with Martin batting, and advanced to third on a throwing error by Reading’s catcher Colby Fitch. Pruitt later scored on a wild pitch to give the Fisher Cats a 3-0 edge.
Martin would end his at-bat with a walk, and Young was hit by a pitch from Leverett to put runners on first and second with nobody out. Following a wild pitch, Lopez drilled a two-run double to left to push the New Hampshire lead to 5-0.
Reading (28-42) rallied with four runs in the ninth, all charged to Will McAffer, but Kyle Johnston (0.2 IP, 1 BB, 1 K) earned his second save with New Hampshire by striking out Logan Landon with the tying run at first.