Two down, two up. Jake Thompson is on the right track.
After a pair of tough outings to start the season, Thompson turned in his best on Sunday. The Phillies right-hander gave up three hits and struck out seven over seven innings Sunday, pitching Triple-A Lehigh Valley to a 1-0 blanking of Toledo at Coca-Cola Park.
In earning his first win of the year, Thompson (1-3) was perfect through five innings, fanning four. Bryan Holaday broke up the perfect game with a leadoff single to right field in the sixth, but the right-hander set down the next three Mud Hens.
Thompson ran into his only spot of trouble in the seventh. Omar Infante led off with a single to center and James Loney replaced him at first base on a forceout. After fanning Efren Navarro, the 23-year-old Texan allowed a two-out infield hit to Michael Almanzar as Loney became the first Mud Hen to reach scoring position. Thompson rebounded and got Steven Moya to fly to right field to end the threat and his impressive afternoon.
Video: Lehigh Valley's Thompson rings up seventh K
In his first two starts of the year, Thompson surrendered 15 earned runs over 4 2/3 innings, adding up to an unsightly 28.93 ERA. He righted himself last time out by allowing three runs -- one earned -- on three hits over five innings in a loss to Columbus.
After walking three batters in each of his first three starts, the 2016 International League Pitcher of the Year recorded his first game without a free pass since a win over Rochester last July 31.
Thompson got an assist from his catcher, third-ranked Phillies prospect Jorge Alfaro, who provided all the offense. With one out in the fourth, Alfaro belted a solo homer to right-center.
Video: Lehigh Valley's Alfaro hits solo homer
MLB.com's No. 67 overall prospect added two singles to lift his slash line to .357/.379/.554.
Toledo starter Buck Farmer (0-1) took the hard-luck loss after yielding one run on five hits over seven innings. He struck out five and walked two.