As routine as always, the Akron Aeros swept through the mismatched Reading Phillies to make it to the Championship round of the Eastern League for the fifth consecutive season. Highlighted by dominant starting pitching, the Aeros out-scored the Phillies 24-9 in the series and will take on the Connecticut Defenders (Double-A affiliate of the San Francisco Giants) starting tonight at Dodd Stadium in Norwich, CT. It was no surprise to see the Defenders take care of the second-place New Britain Rock Cats in their divisional championship as these two teams had been the tops in the league for the past several months.
The Indians season is cruising along agonizingly slowly, but the Aeros are in the thick of playoff baseball yet again. This pennant run in 2009 marks the 9th time in 13 years since the move from Thurman Munson Stadium in Canton that the Indians Double-A affiliate has made the playoffs as well as the 7th time in eight years. Led by many of the featured prospects in the organization (Carlos Santana, Jeanmar Gomez) as well as some recently acquired pitchers (Scott Barnes, Connor Graham), the Aeros cruised through the regular season Eastern League schedule and have now won 11 consecutive games dating back to the regular season.