The Somerset Patriots have won the first-half championship thanks to a walk-off home run by New Jersey native and Yankees top prospect Anthony Volpe. This means that the Patriots have clinched a playoff spot for the Northeast Division semifinals in September. Somerset finished the first half of the season with a 44-25 record winning the first half championship by just one game over the Hartford Yard Goats.
Over the past week, the Somerset Patriots faced off against the Hartford Yard Goats in a six-game series. Somerset lost three of the first four games in the series but came back to win the last two helping split the series and clinching a playoff spot. The Patriots have either won or split every series this season and are yet to lose their first. Against the Yard Goats, some of the biggest contributors were Elijah Dunham, Anthony Volpe, Luis Medina, and Will Warren.
Dunham was outstanding in the series where he went 11 for 22, with one home run, four stolen bases, two doubles, and five RBIs. Volpe went 7- 23 in the series. He hit three home runs, one double, five RBIs, and three stolen bases. Volpe struggled the first two months of the season but has seemed to turn it around in June. This month, Volpe has a slash line of .297/.360/.549 with eight doubles, five home runs, 15 RBIs, and nine stolen bases.
On the mound, Medina and Warren pitched phenomenal for the Patriots. Medina pitched 11.1 innings in his two starts against Hartford. Medina struck out 10, walked four, allowed two runs, and only five hits. He has pitched well this month in his five starts where he holds a 2.03 ERA and has 34 strikeouts in 26.2 innings of work. Warren pitched 5.1 innings for Somerset giving up just four hits, three walks, and struck out seven. Since joining Somerset that is the most strikeouts he has had in a game.
The Somerset Patriots will now face off against the Reading Fightin Phils in a six-game series. They will be playing in Reading at FirstEnergy Stadium. The Fightin Phils are currently 29-40 on the season and Somerset is winning the season series 7-2.