TRENTON, NJ – Caleb Smith threw six innings and Thunder pitching allowed just two hits as they shut out their opponent for the 15th time this season in a 4-0 win over the Reading Fightin Phils in front of 5,673 fans Sunday night at ARM & HAMMER Park.
The Thunder scored twice in their half of the first inning on run-scoring singles from Billy McKinney and Abiatal Avelino. The 2-0 lead for the Thunder was more than enough support for Smith who found his groove early and set down the first nine men he faced in the game.
Smith allowed the only baserunners of his outing in the fourth when KC Serna walked to begin the inning and Christian Marrero followed him with a single to right. Billy McKinney fielded Marrero’s single and threw a strike to third to get Serna for the first out of the inning. The lefty was able to keep Reading off the board with a strikeout of Dylan Cozens to end the inning. Smith finished with six innings pitched, one hit, one walk and eight strikeouts to earn his third win of the season.
The Thunder offense added to their lead when Dante Bichette Jr. and Sebastian Valle hit back-to-back solo home runs in the sixth.
With the 4-0 lead, JP Feyereisen and Tyler Jones slammed the door with three innings of scoreless relief.
Tyler Wade, who scored the game’s first run, now has 90 runs scored on the season; good for fourth-most in a single-season in franchise history. Dustin Fowler’s 152 hits also ranks fourth for a single-season and his 541 at bats is just three shy of matching Ben Gamel’s record set in 2014.
The Thunder complete the regular season at 1 Monday afternoon against the Fightin Phils. RHP Kyle Haynes will start for the Thunder, Reading’s starter is to be announced. Tickets are available by phone at 609-394-3300 or online at TrentonThunder.com.