Marauders Clinch Playoff Spot

On Friday night, all of the Pirates’ minor league affiliates lost.� On Saturday night, all but State College won….

Bradenton Marauders� 4,� Charlotte Stone Crabs� 2 …���� (box)

The Marauders assured themselves at least a spot in the playoffs with this win tonight.� Nate Adcock won his 11th game of the season with 2 runs allowed in 5.2 innings of work.� He gave up a run in the bottom of the 1st, with a 2-out walk, a wild pitch, and two singles.� He surrendered another run on a walk and a double to lead off the 3rd inning.� He scattered 4 more hits, but left two stranded and erased two with double plays.� In the top of the 6th, Adcock got two outs and gave up a single, then that runner stole both second and third base.� He was relieved by Kyle McPherson, who finished that inning with a strikeout, then gave up just one hit over the next 2 innings, including 3 more strikeouts.� Noah Krol earned his league-leading 34th save of the season with a scoreless 9th inning, working around a missed catch error.

Bradenton picked up one run in the 2nd inning, when C Eric Fryer singled, then moved to second base on a groundout.� 3B Adam Davis’ RBI single brought in Fryer.� The Marauders were on the receiving end of several walks over the next few innings — one in the 3rd to SS Shelby Ford, one in the 4th to Fryer, three in the 5th to DH Jordan Newton, 2B James Skelton, and RF Robbie Grossman to load the bases — but all were left on base.� They did score again in the 6th, when LF Quincy Latimore led off with a single.� He was forced out at second on Fryer’s grounder, leaving Fryer at first.� Davis singled again, advancing Fryer to third bse, then Newton doubled in both Fryer and Davis, to take a 3-2 lead.� They added an insurance run in the 4th.� Grossman singled with one out, then scored on CF Starling Marte’s double.� The Marauders threatened again in the 8th, as Davis was hit by a pitch and Newton walked, then Skelton bunted them both into scoring position.� A strikeout and a ground out ended the inning, but it turned out to not matter, and the Marauders season is going to continue beyond the weekend.

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Owens Wins #12, Two Homers For Hague As Curve Clinch Title

Tuesday’s action for the Pirates’ lower minor leaguers….

Altoona Curve� 9,� Bowie Baysox� 1 ..���� (box)

The Altoona Curve clinched the Eastern League’s Western Division title tonight with a win over Bowie.� This is just the second time the Curve have won their division in their 12 years of existence, and it follows a 2009 when the Curve spent the season in the cellar.

Six different Curve batters had 2 hits in the game, and 1B Matt Hague’s two hits were both home runs.� The batters provided plenty of run support for starter Rudy Owens, who won his 12th game of the season.� Owens pitched 6 scoreless innings, and struck out 9 Bowie batters.� Owens allowing 2 singles in the 1st inning but kept the Baysox scoreless thanks to an on-target throw in from RF Miles Durham to C Hector Gimenez, to tag out the lead runner at the plate.� Owens retired the next 11 batters in order, then gave up back-to-back singles in the 5th.� A strikeout ended that inning — he struck out 3 batters in the 5th, and two more in the 6th to finish up his night.

Derek Hankins earned his 7th save with 3 innings of work.� He gave up a lead-off homer to the first batter he faced in the 7th inning, and that was Bowie’s only run of the game.� Hankins loaded the bases with three singles following the homer, but got out of the inning with a strikeout.� He allowed only one more hit over the next two innings and struck out a total of 5 batters.

Meanwhile, the Curve batters were steadily stacking up the runs, scoring in 6 of their 9 at-bats.� Bowie held them off in the 1st inning, despite loading the bases on singles by 3B Josh Harrison and SS Jordy Mercer, and a walk to DH Andrew Lambo. Two strikeouts strikeouts ended the inning without a run scoring.� After that, the Curve took off.� Durham singled and CF Anthony Norman tripled for one run in the 2nd inning (1).� Hague was hit by a pitch, then singles by Gimenez and 2B Jim Negrych brought in 2 runs in the 3rd (3).� Hague homered for the first time, a solo shot, in the 5th (4).� Two more runs came in during the 6th.� Norman walked, and LF Jose De Los Santos reached on a fielding error.� Harrison doubled, plating Norman (5), and Mercer’s ground out brought in De Los Santos (6).� In the 7th, Negrych singled and scored on Norman’s double (7).� Hague homered again in the 8th inning, this time with Mercer on base with a single (9).

Three Curve position players have been named to participate in the Arizona Fall League:� OF Andrew Lambo, INF Josh Harrison, and INF Jordy Mercer will be with the Mesa Solar Sox.� Joining them will be C Tony Sanchez. (Each team is allowed one A-level player.)� The Pirates are also allowed three pitchers, though those assignments have not yet been determined.� The Arizona Fall League begins play in mid-October.

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Mercer Gets 4 Hits And Walk-Off; Cunningham Homers In The 12th

Less action than planned on Tuesday for the Pirates’ lower minor league affiliates, mostly due to rain in the Bradenton area.� The Marauders’ game against the St. Lucie Mets was postponed.� They will try for two tomorrow.� Yesterday’s game between the Fort Myer Miracle and the Marauders was also rained out, as well as the game that they tried to start on Sunday (but only got into the second inning).� Those games will not be made up.� The GCL Braves at GCL Pirates games were washed out yesterday.� They tried to play two today, but only got one of the games in.

GCL Braves� 5,� GCL Pirates� 1 ..� (box)

Each team had 6 hits this afternoon, but the one that counted was the Braves’ walk-off grand slam in the bottom of the 7th.� The Pirates began the scoring with a run in the 3rd inning.� SS Kevin Mort led off with a double, then advanced to third base on DH Justin Howard’s single into right field.� The two pulled off a double steal, with Mort scoring on the steal of home.� The Braves tied the score in the bottom of the 4th with a solo home run.

The Pirates loaded the bases in the 5th, on singles by Howard and CF Junior Sosa, and a walk by 2B Jorge Bishop. A strikeout ended that threat.� Sosa also singled in the 1st inning and stole second base.� LF Exicardo Cayonez also singled in the 4th, but was thrown out trying to steal second.� 1B Jared Lakind made his pro debut, but went 0-for-3 at the plate.

Joely Rodriguez pitched 5 innings in his start, and scattered 3 hits, no walks.� One of those hits was the solo homer in the 4th.� Ryan Hafner also made his pro debut, pitching the 6th inning.� He gave up a lead-off single in the 6th, then got a grounder force out and struck out the next two batters to end the inning and continue the tie.� Hafner began the 7th inning with a single and a walk.� Fraylin Campos relieved Hafner, but he hit the first batter he faced to load the bases.� That set up Braves’ 3B Brandon Drury for the game-winning grand slam.

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Owens Wins #10

Pirates’ lower minor leaguers on Saturday…

Altoona Curve� 10,� Binghamton Mets� 4 (box)

The Curve posted 14 hits, with two big innings, as all but one member of the starting line-up had at least one hit in the game, as starter Rudy Owens earned his 10th win of the season.� SS Jordy Mercer doubled three times and 1B Matt Hague doubled twice, with 4 RBI.� Even Owens doubled, walked, and scored twice.

Owens got off to a little bit of a shaky start on the mound.� He gave up a double, a single, and a sacrifice fly to begin the bottom of the 1st.� A single and a double gave the Mets a second run in the 3rd.� Owens settled in after that, and allowed just one hit in each of the 4th and 5th.

The Curve got one run back in the top of the 4th, after putting runners on base in each of the first three innings but failing to score.� In the 4th,� Mercer hit his first double, and he scored on RF Miles Durham’s RBI single.� Then they broke through in the 5th.� Owens led off the inning with a walk.� LF Jose De Los Santos singled, then 3B Josh Harrison bunted both runners into scoring position.� 2B Jim Negrych was intentionally walked to load the bases.� Hague cleared the bases with a double into left field, then Mercer hit his second double (this one was a ground-rule double), plating Hague.� The Curve had a 5-2 lead.

The next inning began with a solo home run by Miles Durham.� One out later, Owens doubled, and De Los Santos singled.� A fielding error on a ball hit to third by Harrison let Owens score.� Negrych brought in both Owens and De Los Santos with another double, and Hague made it three doubles in the inning with his 26th of the season, bringing in Negrych with the fifth run of the inning.� The Curve were up, 10-2.

Mike Colla relieved Owens to begin the 6th.� He gave up a solo homer in that inning, and another solo homer in the 8th, but retired the other 12 batters he faced in 4 innings.� Owens earned his 10th win of the season, and Colla earned his first save.

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I’m Still Awake — And So Are The Curve!

Friday’s action with the Pirates’ lower minor leaguers… The GCL Pirates and the GCL Tigers barely got started this afternoon before their game had to be suspended.� Starter Bryton Trepagnier pitched 2 innings and allowed a run on one hit in the 1st.� The Pirates had had 6 batters go down in order when play was halted.

Only a few more days left until the deadline for signing draftees… take a look HERE to see which draft picks the Pirates have signed.� The newest signee is OF Dan Grovatt, the 11th round pick, from University of Virginia.

Reliever Daniel Moskos has been returned to Altoona from the Indy Indians.� He’d been struggling with the Indians, with a 0-5 record, one save, and a 10.38 ERA in 19 appearances.� In his last appearance, on Monday, Moskos walked the bases loaded in his one inning of work, though a line drive out got him out of trouble.

Pitcher Travis Chick, who had been assigned to Altoona last week, was traded to the Texas Rangers;� they assigned him to AA Frisco.

Altoona Curve� 4,� New Hampshire Fisher Cats� 3�� (19 innings — yes, 19) (box)

The Curve and the Fisher Cats played for 19 innings, and 5 hours and 49 minutes, finally finishing up at 12:50 am, when RF Miles Durham blasted a home run to break a 13.5 inning tie.

It all started innocently.� New Hampshire scored first on a single, an RBI double, and a controversial 2-run homer in the 3rd.� The ball sailed over the left field wall… or did it?� It was ruled a homer, and the Curve protested, but the ruling stood.� Much later in the game, the word came in from some fans who were out there — the ball had indeed cleared the left field wall by about 8 inches, then hit a secondary wall behind the first one.

The Curve got two runs back in the 4th.� 2B Jordy Mercer led off with a single, moved to second on a wild pitch, then on to third when� Miles Durham singled.� A fielder’s choice by SS Yung Chi Chen brought in Mercer, and a single by DH Jim Negrych brought in Durham.� Mercer picked up the RBI in the 5th to tie the score.� LF Andrew Lambo walked, 1B Matt Hague singled, and they advanced to second and third bases on a missed catch error.� Mercer’s ground out brought Lambo in from third.

That 3-3 tie lasted…. until Saturday.� Bryan Morris pitched the first 4 innings and allowed the 3 runs in the 3rd, on a total of 4 hits, no walks, with 3 strikeouts.� Mike Colla pitched 2 scoreless innings, with 3 hits.� Derek Hankins threw 3 innings, allowing only a walk.� Mike Dubee contributed 3 more scoreless innings, with one hit.� Anthony Claggett also took 3 innings, and gave up 2 walks.� Tom Boleska pitched 4 innings, because by then, only Daniel Moskos was left, and someone had to be saved for Saturday’s (evening) game.� Boleska managed to keep going, even when he was smacked with a come-backer.� He gave up 2 hits, but struck out 3 batters, and still didn’t allow a run.� Boleska got the win, since he was the pitcher of record when Durham homered.

The Curve batters had more hits in all those innings, but they still were putting up donuts.� The Curve had two runners on base in the 14th — single by 3B Josh Harrison and an intentional walk to Hague.� They loaded the bases in the 16th, when Harrison walked, Lambo singled, and Hague was intentionally walked again, but Mercer struck out, and it kept going.� Harrison singled in the 18th, and stole second base, then Lambo walked again, but they still couldn’t get a run across.� Finally in the top of the 19th, after C Hector Gimenez flied out, Durham sent everyone home with his homer over the left-center field wall.� The Curve had to cancel the schedule fireworks show, because county regulations forbid fireworks after midnight.� They did not cancel the opportunity for the kids to run the bases … at 1 am, there were kids, up way beyond their bedtime, running the bases at Blair County Ballpark.

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