Altoona Tops Bowie in Alderson’s First Start

After pitching well out of the Altoona (and, briefly, Indianapolis) bullpen for six weeks, Tim Alderson got his first start Tuesday night at Bowie. The Curve won the game, 7-3, beating top prospect Dylan Bundy’s older brother, Bobby. Altoona scored three in the third to take a 3-1 lead, but after the Baysox tied the game with two in the fourth, Altoona took the lead for good and closed out the scoring with four runs in the fifth inning.

Alderson Has Decent Start

Alderson had a dominant first inning, setting the side down in order and fanning two. He was more hittable after that. His fastball sat at 90-91 in the first, reaching as high as 93, but dropped to the upper 80s in the second and third innings. It mostly rebounded to 90-91 in the fourth and fifth. Starting in the fourth, Alderson seemed to be putting more effort into his fastball, possibly resulting in getting his velocity back up to the low 90s, but he struggled more with his control. His curve looked good and he was able to catch hitters looking at it a number of times. Alderson’s final line: 5 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 3 K.

After Shairon Martis threw one inning, Mike Colla pitched the last three for the save. Colla’s been struggling this year as a starter, so the move to the bullpen may get him going. He threw a fastball generally around 90-91, although it was hittable at times. Against left-handed batters, Colla showed a good changeup, accounting for a lot of his Ks. He threw a decent curve to right-handed hitters. He finished with four hits allowed, no walks and five Ks.

Notes on Other Players

— Robbie Grossman went 1-5 with two strikeouts. He had one well hit ball that went for an out. Grossman showed a stronger arm in center than I remember him having.

— Tony Sanchez went 1-3 with a walk. One of the outs was a long drive that was caught on the track in right-center. Sanchez looked good blocking pitches behind the plate, but wasn’t tested otherwise.

— Elevys Gonzalez and Matt Curry had two-run triples, one of two hits for Gonzalez.

— With Jeff Larish joining Indianapolis, Miles Durham moved down to AA. He went 2-4 with a double.

— Going into the season, Altoona seemed likely to have a mostly-prospect lineup. Instead, Jarek Cunningham, Adalberto Santos and Andrew Lambo are all hurt, and Brock Holt got a day off. The Curve had Durham, Anthony Norman, and Kelson Brown in the starting lineup.

— After going 1-4, Brown is hitting .315, albeit with no power at all.

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Wilbur Miller joined the site in July 2010. He has long been known for his excellent Player Profiles, which he brought to the site in February 2011, combining them with the existing Pirates Prospects Player Pages. Wilbur maintains the player pages section of the site, and provides regular articles to the main portion of the site, including a weekly Prospects Trend piece, featuring the best and worst prospects from the previous week.

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