Power Finish With A Win, Curve Save It For The Playoffs
Reading Phillies� 3,� Altoona Curve� 0 …��� (box)
The Curve must be saving it up for the playoffs, which begin on Wednesday.� They were held to just 3 hits today, and had one batter reach on a walk.� 3B Josh Harrison, 2B Jim Negrych, and LF Andrew Lambo had a single apiece, and starting pitcher Tony Watson worked the walk.� The game began as a pitching duel between Watson and R-Phils’ Drew Naylor.
Watson kept the R-Phils scoreless for the first 5 innings.� He retired the first 7 batters he faced in order, then gave up a walk and a single in the 3rd inning.� He allowed two singles in the 4th, then got out of the jam with the help of a double play.� In the 5th, he worked around a walk.� It wasn’t until the 6th inning that the R-Phils were able to get onto the scoreboard.� Former Indy Indian 1B Tagg Bozied smacked a solo home run over the right field wall, and C Kevin Nelson made it back-to-back homers, to give Reading a 2-0 lead.
Craig Hansen, just promoted from Bradenton, relieved Watson to begin the 7th inning.� Hansen gave up a walk in each of two innings, but did not allow a run to score.� Tom Boleska pitched the 9th inning, and allowed one more run, on two doubles.
The Curve put runners on base in three of the first four innings.� Jim Negrych singled with two outs in the 1st, but was left on base.� Watson walked and Harrison singled in the 3rd, but that was the only time in the game that the Curve had a runner safely reach second base.� Both were left on base when the inning ended.� In the 4th, Lambo singled but was forced out at second base.� But after th3 4th, the Curve did not put a runner on base for the rest of the game. Watson was charged with the loss.
Tagg Bozied, who spent part of 2009 with the Indy Indians, has been playing at AA Reading all season.� He finished the season with the Eastern League batting average title with a .315 average.� He was second in the league with 27 homers, and 4th in RBI with 92.
The Eastern League end-of-season All-Star Team was announced, and it includes two Curve players:� Lefty starting pitcher Rudy Owens and catcher Hector Gimenez. It also includes former Curve player Ray Chang, who played for Portland this season.
The Curve will play against Harrisburg in the first round of the playoffs, and as the first-place team, they will have the home field advantage in the best-of-5 series.� The winner of that series will face the winner of the series between New Hampshire and Trenton.� If the Curve get to the championship series, they will host the first two games of that best-of-5 series.