Vince Velasquez (1-0) was strong in his rehab start for the Reading Fightin Phils (50-22) as he guided them to a 4-1 victory over the Akron RubberDucks (42-30) on Wednesday night. Reading snapped a three-game losing streak with another home-run filled performance behind Velasquez's start.
Todd Hankins led off the game with a solo home run off Velasquez that gave Akron a 1-0 lead. It was the first lead-off home run against the Fightin Phils since April 26th this season. Ricardo Pinto gave up a home run to begin the game against Clint Frazier. Reading tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the second as Osmel Aguila hit a RBI single off Shawn Morimando (9-3).
Rhys Hoskins hit a two-run home run off Morimando with two outs in the bottom of the third to give Reading a 3-1 lead. It was his 18th home run of the season, a career high. Jake Fox hit a home run in the following at-bat to extend the lead to 4-1. It was Fox's 12th home run of the season. Reading last hit back-to-back home runs on June 10th vs. Altoona when Dylan Cozens and Hoskins did it.
Velasquez allows just one run off two hits and one walk with three strikeouts in five innings. He threw 76 pitches, 51 for strikes. Mark Leiter Jr. entered the game in the top of the sixth. He issued three walks with two strikeouts in four innings as he earned his first AA save. His first save was on April 27th of last season for Clearwater.
Jesmuel Valentin's nine-game hitting streak came to an end as he finished the night 0-for-4.
The Fightin Phils and Akron RubberDucks will wrap up their series on Thursday afternoon. First pitch is at 12:05 pm. Fans can listen to the game on Sports Radio AM 1240/FM 98.5 and fightins.com beginning at 11:35 am. Fans can also watch the game on MiLB.tv beginning at 12:05 pm.
Tickets for the 2016 season are available online at Fightins.com, by phone at 610-370-BALL, and in-person at FirstEnergy Stadium.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.