New Britain, Conn. - The Fightin Phils got three clutch two-out base hits and a quality start from 20-year-old Severino Gonzalez as Reading won its final game of the 2013 season, 3-2, over the New Britain Rock Cats on Monday afternoon in front of 3,385 fans at New Britain Stadium.
Down 1-0 after an inning, Troy Hanzawa would help the Fightin Phils pull even in the top of the second. The Hawaiian doubled into the gap in right-center field with two outs in the inning to score Anthony Hewitt from third, tying the game 1-1.
It would stay tied until the seventh when Reading (62-80) would again come up with a pair of timely two-out hits. With Hanzawa at first base, Albert Cartwright doubled into the gap in left-center, scoring the runner all of the way from first to put the Fightins in front 2-1. Matt Tolbert singled to left on the very next pitch, driving in Cartwright with an important insurance run as Reading took a 3-1 advantage.
It was enough for Gonzalez (1-0) who allowed two runs and eight hits in 6 2/3 innings to pick up the win in his Double-A debut. The Santiago, Panama-native struck out six batters and walked none while throwing 87 pitches.
Hector Neris worked a scoreless 1 1/3 innings and Kyle Simon needed only six pitches to retire the side in order in the ninth to earn his 11th save of the season.
D.J. Baxendale (5-7) suffered the loss for New Britain. He allowed three runs and 12 hits in 7 1/3 innings, striking out nine batters and walking none. The Rock Cats finished the season 66-76.
The Fightin Phils open the 2014 season on Thursday, April 3rd at FirstEnergy Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM.