PORTLAND — The Portland Sea Dogs kicked off their 22nd season with an Opening Day split of a doubleheader with the Reading Fightin Phils, winning Game 1 4-2 and dropping Game 2 9-0.

The Sea Dogs offense got off to a quick start, with Keury De La Cruz hitting a three-run home run off of Reading starter Aaron Nola. The home run marks the second straight season a Sea Dogs player has homered in the first inning of Opening Day.

After Reading plated a run in the top of the 2nd to cut the Sea Dogs lead to 3-2, Portland answered in the bottom half of the inning with an RBI single from Mike Miller. Miller, who was making his AA debut, played both games in the twin billing and finished 4-for-5 with a double, RBI, run scored, stolen base, and was also hit by a pitch.

Sea Dogs starter Luis Diaz went four innings and allowed two runs on five hits with one walk and two strikeouts, and received no decision.

The Fightin Phils dominated Game 2 with a 9-0 victory. Jesse Biddle (1-0), who struggled against Portland in last year’s season opener, picked up the win with an impressive performance, going five innings and allowing just two hits and walks while striking out four.

Reading batted around in the third inning and knocked Sea Dogs starter Justin Haley (0-1) out of the game after just 2.1 innings pitched. Haley allowed four runs (3 earned) on four hits, while walking and striking out three. ering in the inning.

The Sea Dogs and Fightin Phils wrap up their series tomorrow afternoon at Hadlock Field.


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