Crawford sparks BlueClaws' hit parade

Phillies first-rounder homers, reaches base five times in victory

J.P. Crawford is batting .324 in 27 South Atlantic League games this season with Lakewood. (Ashley Marshall/

By Ashley Marshall / | May 4, 2014 7:14 PM ET

McCormick Field is a fun place to hit on a regular day. When the wind is blowing out, it's a real batters' paradise.

Phillies first-rounder J.P. Crawford went 4-for-5 with a homer, a walk and two runs scored and Andrew Pullin finished a triple shy of the cycle as the Class A Lakewood BlueClaws turned an historic day at the plate into a 14-11 victory over the host Asheville Tourists.

The game featured 12-mph winds and a combined 37 hits and seven long balls. The five Lakewood homers tied a franchise record set a decade ago while the 22 hits equaled its best nine-inning total and fell one shy of the team's all-time mark set in a 22-inning marathon in 2006.

Since 2009, park factors show McCormick Field ranks first among South Atlantic League ballparks in runs and hits allowed and second in home runs. Has Pullin ever played in an environment as conducive to offense?

"I never have," he said. "It's different. A lot of things can happen really fast. The fences are really short and the ball carries well. I don't know what it is, it's crazy. The wind was blowing out to center field. It was a firm wind, pretty steady, and it helped the ball carry."

Nineteen-year-old Crawford bunted for a base hit to lead off the game, homered to center field in the fourth and singled to right in both the fifth and the eighth. The Phillies' No. 3 prospect also lined out in the second and drew a one-out walk in the ninth.

Pullin homered to begin the second, singled to right in the third and laced an RBI double to right in the fourth. He lined out in the sixth and grounded out in the eighth.

"I thought it went really well," he said. "We hit the ball well and drove in a lot of runs. It was a lot of fun. It's great when everybody on the team is really doing well. It's a great feeling."

It was Crawford's ninth multi-hit game of the season and his third career four-hit outing. He went 4-for-6 with a homer, double and four runs scored in a 10-9 loss to Greensboro on April 7. Selected by Philadelphia 16th overall in the 2013 Draft, he first accomplished the feat with the Phillies' Gulf Coast League affiliate last July 6.

Crawford, who batted .308 with one homer and 21 RBIs over 53 games between two levels in his rookie season, has hit safely in each of his past seven games, during which the team is 6-1. Sunday's effort marked the third time the cousin of Major League outfielder Carl Crawford has reached base five times in one game in his two-year Minor League career.

"I know there's always a chance of him getting on [base]," Pullin said of Crawford. "He gives the team a lot of confidence. I don't know if there's just one thing about him. He's always on base, always hitting the ball hard and he's very smooth defensively. He's a great teammate and great all round."

Dylan Cozens was 3-for-4 with a homer and three RBIs, Willians Astudillo recorded a solo homer, two doubles, three runs and two RBIs and Samuel Hiciano added a three-run blast. The offense proved enough to earn Alejandro Arteaga (3-3) the win. He yielded six runs over 5 2/3 innings, allowing seven hits and three walks. He struck out four batters.

Correlle Prime and Jordan Patterson went back-to-back for the Tourists. Zach Jemiola (2-3) allowed seven runs on 10 hits while striking out two batters over three innings.

Ashley Marshall is a contributor to Follow him on Twitter @AshMarshallMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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