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Kotowski Crushes Two Homers in Exhibition Tie

BayCare Ballpark Spring Training Job Fairs in December

March 27, 2024 – Florida State League (FSL)
Clearwater Threshers News Release

CLEARWATER, FL – Dakota Kotowski slugged two important home runs and Orion Kerkering led a shutout day for the Phillies bullpen in a 4-4 tie between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Toronto Blue Jays in a minor league exhibition game at the Carpenter Complex on Wednesday afternoon. Minor leaguers have two more days of spring camp before breaking out to the affiliated clubs and the 2024 regular season.

After the Blue Jays put up four runs in the second, the Phillies began to mount their comeback in the home half of the frame. Kotowski started the scoring for the Phil’s with a solo home run to lead off the inning. Luis Calicuto followed with a single and Yemal Flores reached on a walk. Both hitters advanced a base on a passed ball by Toronto’s catcher Edward Duran before Caicuto scored on an RBI groundout off the bat of Diego Gonzalez to cut the deficit to 4-2.

The scoreline remained the same until the seventh inning, which began with a leadoff single by Gonzalez. He moved to second on a walk to Starlyn Caba and advanced to third on a wild pitch before scoring on a sacrifice fly by Aroon Escobar that made it 4-3. Kotowski tied the game with his second home run of the afternoon, a leadoff shot in the eighth that tied the game at four.

Philadelphia’s prospects did not record a hit after the second Kotowski home run, and Saul Terán had to fight his way out of a bases-loaded jam in the ninth inning with three punch outs. The game ended in a 4-4 tie on the penultimate day of exhibitions before the 2024 season officially begins.

George Klassen got the start and threw 2.0 innings, allowing four runs on two hits with three walks and a strikeout in a no-decision. Brandon Beckel struck out two and walked one in 1.0 shutout inning. Orion Kerkering retired all three batters he faced in a rehab outing. Casey Steward tossed 3.0 shutout frames with one hit allowed and four strikeouts. Jose Pena walked one in 1.0 scoreless and hitless frame. Terán struck out three batters with two hits and one walk allowed in 1.0 scoreless inning.

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