Avila And Noris Homer In Power Loss; Baker Strikes Out 8

Lakewood BlueClaws  6,  West Virginia Power  5
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The Power played an early game today, but fell to the BlueClaws in the 10th inning.  Starter Jameson Taillon did not factor into the decision, though he pitched 5 innings and allowed 3 runs on 7 hits and a walk, while striking out 2 batters.  The first two runs Taillon allowed came in the first two innings of the game.  In the top of the 1st, a single, a ground out, and another single gave the Claws their first run.  Two more singles, a double steal, and a sacrifice fly made it 2-0 in the top of the 2nd.

The Power tied the score in the bottom of the 2nd.  1B Matt Curry walked, and DH Justin Howard moved Curry to third with a double lined into left field.  C Kawika Emsley-Pai brought in Curry with an RBI single, and LF Rogelios Noris plated Howard with a sacrifice fly.   

Taillon walked a batter in the 3rd, and with a stolen base and a missed catch error by 2B Andy Vasquez on the throw to second, the runner reached third base.  Taillon escaped without a run scored, though, when the next batter flied out and RF Dan Grovatt made an on-target throw to Emsley-Pai, who tagged out the runner at the plate.  Taillon worked around a single in the 4th, but got into trouble again in the 5th.  A single and two ground outs again put a runner on third base, and an RBI single broke the tie, giving the Claws a 3-2 lead.  

The Power tied the score again in the bottom of the 5th.  3B Eric Avila led off with a walk, and moved to second base on a wild pitch.  Pinch-hitter Kevin Mort sacrifice bunted Avila to third base, and SS Drew Maggi’s single through the hole into left field let Avila score.  

Tyler Waldron relieved Taillon to begin the 6th inning.  Waldron gave up a double in both the 6th and 7th innings, but both times left that runner on base for two scoreless innings.  Avila was next to break the tie with a solo homer to lead off the bottom of the 7th.  But back-to-back solo homers in the top of the 8th gave the lead right back to the Claws.  Noris was the next to homer, tying the score again, 5-5, in the bottom of the 9th to send the game into extras.

With Waldron still on the mound in the top of the 10th, the Claws made two outs, then began a rally with a walk.  Waldron struck out the next batter, but strike three was a wild pitch, and the Claws got a second chance with the batter reaching first base safely.  They took advantage of the opportunity, with an RBI single to score the runner from second base.  Casey Sadler relieved Waldron and struck out the next batter to end the inning.  The Power had a chance in the bottom of the 10th, when Curry doubled with two outs.  Lakewood also brought in another reliever, who also got a strikeout (of Howard) to end the Power’s threat and the game.  

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Curve Split Another Double Header; Three Hits For Maggi And Howard

The Curve were making up a rained out game with a double header:

Altoona Curve  2,  Akron Aeros  0     (Game 1)
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After shutting out the Aeros last night, the Curve pitching staff continued their dominance with another 7 shutout innings in Game 1 of the double header.  Tonight it was Aaron Pribanic who earned his 4th win with 7 scoreless innings, for a (shortened) complete game.  He gave up 6 hits, no walks, and also worked around two errors by his fielders.  Pribanic had at least one base runner on in all but one inning.  Akron had a small threat going in the 6th, when Pribanic gave up back-to-back singles with one out, but a foul pop ended that inning.  With one out in the 7th, Pribanic gave up a hit, then another batter reached on 3B Jeremy Farrell’s throwing error.  Pribanic got a grounder force out and a fly out to end that inning.  

The Curve also posted just 6 hits, but they made them count.  Farrell singled in the bottom of the 2nd, and moved to second base on a wild pitch.  He scored on DH Eric Fryer’s single up the middle.  Fryer also advanced to second on another wild pitch, and 1B Miles Durham walked, but they were left on base.  CF Starling Marte contributed the Curve’s only other run with a solo home run in the 3rd.  Marte also singled in the 1st inning.  SS Jordy Mercer singled in the 2nd, but was picked off and caught stealing, and singled again in the 6th.  C Tony Sanchez walked in the 4th and stole second base.  

Aeros  8,  Curve  1       (Game 2)
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Curve starter Bryan Morris continued the streak with 3 scoreless innings, in which he gave up only a walk, and struck out 3 batters.  But the streak ended in the 4th, when Morris started out by giving up a single and a walk.  He was relieved by Matt McSwain.  The first batter McSwain faced dropped down a sacrifice bunt to put both runners in scoring position.  McSwain then walked the next two batters, forcing in a run, before striking out two batters to end the inning.  McSwain came back out in the 5th and began with a hit batter and a walk.  The lead runner stole third base, then scored on an RBI single.  A triple drove in two more runs, to give Akron a 4-0 lead.  

The Curve were held to just 3 hits, and two of those were by LF Quincy Latimore.  Latimore singled in the 1st but was thrown out trying to steal second base.  He singled again in the 4th and was left on base.  The only other hit was a solo home run by C Eric Fryer in the 5th inning, for the only Curve run of the game.  The last 7 Curve batters were retired in order.  

Brian Leach took the mound in relief of McSwain in the 6th and retired the side in order.  The Aeros rallied again in the top of the 7th.  The inning began with a double, a single, and a walk to load the bases.  A triple cleared the bases for 3 runs.  After a walk, a sacrifice fly brought in the 4th run of the inning.  Leach surrendered another single, then was relieved by Noah Krol, who ended the inning with a grounder force out.

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Curve Split Double Header; Homers For Diaz, Baker, And Grossman

Thursday night’s action with the Pirates’ lower minor league teams…..

Akron Aeros  6,  Altoona Curve  1      (Game 1)
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The Aeros began today’s double-header with a 5-run 1st inning, and the Curve could not catch up in Game 1.  2B Brock Holt went 3-for-3 with a triple and two singles.  

Curve starter Aaron Thompson did not get out of the first inning.  With one out, A pair of doubles drove in one run.  A catchers’ interference call on C Eric Fryer put the next batter on first base, and a single loaded the bases.  Thompson got a strikeout, but then walked in a run.  Two more singles drove in three more runs for a 5-0 lead.  Tim Alderson relieved Thompson, and Alderson ended the inning with a tapper back to the mound.  
 
Alderson gave up a double and a single in the 2nd inning, then retired the next three batters to get out of the inning without further runs scoring.  He went on to retire the next 11 batters in order (14 in order overall), before giving up a solo home run in the 6th.  

Holt recorded his first single in the top of the 1st, and CF Starling Marte reached base on an error, but they were not able to come around to score.  Holt singled again in the 3rd, with two outs.  That time he was out at second on a grounder force out.  SS Jordy Mercer singled in the 4th, and was left on base.  The Curve scored their only run in the 5th.  1B Miles Durham walked in the 5th, and moments later, Holt drove Durham in with his triple.  

Altoona Curve  2,  Akron Aeros  1     (Game 2)
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Jared Hughes pitched into the 6th inning, and kept the Aeros scoreless in the night-cap.  Hughes gave up 4 hits and 2 walks, and worked around runners on base in four of the innings he pitched.  He left two runners in scoring position in the 1st, and allowed another single in the 2nd.  In the 4th, the Aeros doubled, and the runner advanced to third on a bunt.  A grounder to 3B Shelby Ford became a fielder’s choice when Ford’s throw home let C Kris Watts tag out the runner at the plate.  Hughes gave up another single and a walk in the 6th, and was relieved by Michael Dubee.  Dubee moved both runners into scoring position with a wild pitch, but ended the inning with a strikeout.  

The Curve got onto the scoreboard in the 2nd inning.  DH Jeremy Farrell doubled into center field, and 1B Miles Durham walked.  Ford lifted a single into left field, allowing Farrell to score from second base.  A pair of doubles added another run for the Curve in the 3rd.  With one out, CF Starling Marte doubled into center field.  Marte scored on LF Quincy Latimore’s double into left.  Latimore also singled and Farrell walked in the 6th, but the Aeros changed pitchers, and two strikeouts ended the inning.  

Akron’s only run came in the bottom of the 7th.  Dubee gave up a lead-off double and a walk, and with two outs, an RBI single up the middle brought in the lead runner.   

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Santos Homers In Bradenton Loss

A rainy Tuesday night in the Pirates’ minor league organization.  The Indianapolis Indians played their entire game in the rain.  The Altoona Curve’s game against the Akron Aeros (in Akron) was postponed due to rain.  It will be made up as part of a double-header on Thursday.  The West Virginia Power and the Lexington Legends were also rained out in Lexington.  They’ll try for two tomorrow, beginning at 10 am.   The Marauders might have wished it was raining in Bradenton.

Clearwater Threshers  3,  Bradenton Marauders  2 
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LF Adalberto Santos hit his first homer of the season and contributed to the Marauders’ 9th inning rally, but it wasn’t enough to beat the Threshers.  Quinton Miller made the start for Bradenton.  He pitched 5 scoreless innings, though had to work around runners on base in each of them:  
– two singles in the 1st
– a hit batter, a single, and a walk in the 2nd
– a single in the 3rd (erased by a double play)
– a triple in the 4th (out at the plate on a fielder’s choice)
– a fielding error in the 5th.

But Miller’s luck ran out in the 6th, when the inning began with a double and a single to put two runners into scoring position.  A suicide bunt scored the lead runner, and with two outs, a single loaded the bases.  Miller was relieved by Jason Erickson, who threw a wild pitch, allowing the runner on third to score.  Erickson gave up an unearned run in the 8th, which would prove to be the winning run.  With two outs, a fielding error by 2B Jarek Cunningham put a runner on second, and an RBI double brought that runner around to score.  Duke Welker pitched the top of the 9th, and retired the Threshers in order — the only 1-2-3 inning for the Marauders’ pitchers.

The Marauders got onto the scoreboard in the 2nd inning, with Santos’ solo blast over the right field wall.  They put two runners on base in the 4th, when C Ramon Cabrera walked and 3B Elevys Gonzalez singled, but a double play ended that inning.   Santos reached base again in the 5th on a walk, then stole second base and moved to third on a passed ball, but that was as far as he got.  

The second Marauders’ run came in a rally in the 9th.  With one out, CF Evan Chambers walked, and Santos singled, moving Chambers to second base.  DH Cole White grounded to third, and the Threshers’ third baseman went for the fielders’ choice, but didn’t get it — leaving the bases full of Marauders.  An RBI ground out by SS Benji Gonzalez let Chambers score from third.  Another ground out ended the inning and the game.  

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8th Inning Rally For Power; Marauders Win On Chambers’ Homer

The Altoona Curve had a scheduled day off on Monday….

West Virginia Power  9,  Kannapolis Intimidators  8
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Late inning rallies for a total of 7 runs gave the Power the win over Kannapolis.  1B Matt Curry got the scoring started with a solo home run to begin the bottom of the 2nd.  That run was overwhelmed, though, when the Intimidators exploded for 6 runs in the top of the 3rd.  Power starter Zack Von Rosenberg had allowed only one walk over the first two innings, but that fell apart in the 3rd inning.  A single, a walk, and a triple brought in two runs.  A sacrifice fly gave Von Rosenberg the first out of the inning, but it also scored the runner from third, for a 3-1 lead.  Two more singles, another triple, and another single brought in 3 more runs, for a 6-1 lead, and sent Von Rosenberg to the showers.   Zac Fuesser relieved Von Rosenberg, and Fuesser’s first move was to pick off the runner on first base and get him out in a run-down.  A walk and a strikeout ended the inning.  

The Power got one of the runs back in the bottom of the 3rd, on 3B Eric Avila’s double and a fielding error on LF Dan Grovatt’s bouncer to short.  Fuesser gave up a pair of walks and a single in the 4th, but a timely double play kept any runs from scoring.  He also gave up a pair of singles in the 5th, but was aided by an outfield assist from Grovatt.  Kannapolis scored again in the 6th, with a two-out ground-rule double and an RBI single.  Two more doubles gave Kannapolis another run in the top of the 7th, for an 8-2 lead.

Then the Power burst out with 7 unanswered runs over their last two at-bats to take the lead and the win.  With one out, DH Jairo Marquez lined a single into left field, and Avila drove him in with a triple.  SS Drew Maggi’s ground out plated Avila.  2B Kevin Mort singled and pinch-hitter Rogelios Noris walked, but they did not score in that inning.  The Power continued the surge right where they left off in the 8th.  RF Justin Howard led off with a double and CF Mel Rojas was hit by a pitch.  C Kawika Emsley-Pai loaded the bases with a walk.  Marquez drove in Howard with a single grounded into right field, leaving the bases still loaded.  Avila bounced to short, for a force out at second base, but Rojas scored the second run of the inning on the play.  After an out, Mort singled, plating Emsley-Pai, then Noris tripled in both Avila and Mort, for the tying and go-ahead runs.  

Zach Foster relieved Fuesser for the final two innings.  Foster allowed a double and hit a batter with a pitch in the 8th, but two strikeouts left them stranded.   He also walked a batter in the 9th, but got two more strikeouts to preserve the Power lead and earned his first win of the season.  

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