Homers For Mercer And Watts; Three Power All-Stars

Tonight it’s the Bradenton Marauders who have a scheduled night off….

 
Altoona Curve  10,  Erie SeaWolves  5
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The Curve posted 13 hits, with CF Starling Marte leading the barrage with 3 of them.  The Curve jumped out to a 6-0 lead with 2 runs in the bottom of the 1st and 4 more in the 2nd.  2B Brock Holt opened the bottom of the 1st with a double into center field.  Marte’s ground out moved Holt to third base, and he scored on SS Jordy Mercer’s single into left field.  Mercer advanced to second base on a ground out by LF Quincy Latimore, and he scored on 1B Matt Curry’s RBI single.  

The 2nd inning began with a walk by C Tony Sanchez, followed by a ground-rule double by DH Kris Watts.  Both runners held their place on a short fly out and a strike out, then Marte singled, driving in Sanchez.  Marte stole second base, and the Erie pitcher threw a wild pitch, allowing Watts to score.  A 2-run homer by Mercer brought in Marte and gave the Curve the 6-0 lead.  

Erie got two of the runs back in the top of the 3rd off starter Jeff Locke.  A single and a hit batter gave the SeaWolves 2 runners on base with 2 outs.  The lead runner came in on a fielding error by Mercer, then a single plated the second unearned run of the inning.  A double, a fielding error by Latimore, and a sacrifice fly gave Erie a third run in the 4th inning.

The Curve kept adding on.  Watts blasted a solo homer in the 3rd.  In the 5th, Curry doubled, then scored on Sanchez’s line drive single into center field, and the Curve led 8-3.  Sanchez also stole second base and went to third on a throwing error, but was left there when Watts struck out.  

Locke pitched 6 innings and allowed 3 runs (1 earned) on 6 hits, no walks, while striking out 8 batters.  Tim Alderson came on in relief to begin the 7th, but he got into trouble right away.  With one out, he gave up a single and three consecutive walks, driving in a run.  Michael Dubee replaced Alderson, and he got the next batter to ground out, but that brought in another run, also charged to Alderson.  Dubee ended the inning with a strikeout.  Dubee also pitched a scoreless 8th inning, allowing 2 singles.  Noah Krol pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the 9th.

Altoona rallied one more time in the bottom of the 8th.  With one out, Watts was hit by a pitch, and RF Brad Chalk ripped a triple into right field, easily scoring Watts.  Chalk scored on Holt’s RBI single, and Marte also added a single — his third of the game.  

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Curve Held To 3 Hits; Marauders Held To 2 Hits

Saturday evening’s action with the Pirates’ lower minor league affiliates.

Don’t forget to vote for the All-Star Teams:
Pirates/MLB:  vote here
Indianapolis Indians/International League:  vote here
Altoona Curve/Eastern League:  vote here

Portland Sea Dogs  4,  Altoona Curve  0
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The Curve were held to just 6 base runners — 3 singles and 3 walks, and could not push any of them around to score.  SS Jordy Mercer was the only Curve to reach base in the first 5 innings.  He walked to lead off the 2nd inning, but was out at second base when 1B Matt Curry flied out.  

Starter Mike Colla retired Portland in order in the first two innings, but gave up a solo home run in the 3rd.  He gave up another solo blast in the 4th, and struck out the other three batters in that inning.  In the 5th, a lead-off double and an RBI single gave the Sea Dogs their third run in the 5th.  Portland’s third homer of the game made it 4-0 in the 6th.  Colla left after 6 innings, having allowed 7 hits (3 homers and 4 other hits), one walk, and 6 strikeouts.  He threw 94 pitches, with 58 strikes.  

The Curve threatened in the 6th inning, with a walk by DH Kris Watts and singles by RF Brad Chalk and 2B Brock Holt loading the bases with one out.  But CF Starling Marte bounced into a double play to end the inning.  Mercer singled in the 7th, and he was also erased with a double play.  Chalk walked in the 9th, but was left on base.  

Matt McSwain pitched 2 scoreless innings for the Curve in relief of Colla.  He gave up two singles, but one was eliminated with a double play, and the other was left stranded.  Noah Krol pitched the top of the 9th, allowing a walk and a single.   

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Power Go Long; Curve Cut Short

Friday evening’s action with the Pirates’ lower minor league affiliates:

Altoona Curve  6,  Binghamton Mets  6
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Rain halted the game between the Curve and the Mets in Binghamton, NY in the top of the 7th inning, with the score tied at 6-6.  Starter Aaron Thompson got into trouble early in the game, when he gave up 4 runs to the B-Mets in the bottom of the 1st.  A single and a hit batter led off the inning, then two fly outs and a wild pitch moved both runners into scoring position.  Three singles brought in a run each, and a double added the 4th run of the inning.  Thompson gave up a hit in each of the next two innings, but erased one with a double play, and left the other stranded.  A solo homer in the bottom of the 4th gave the Mets a 5-0 lead, then a single, a double, and a sacrifice fly gave the Mets their 6th run in the 5th. 

The Curve put one runner on base in each of the first four innings, but none of those runners came around to score.  2B Brock Holt walked in the 1st, but was out in a double play.  C Tony Sanchez singled in the 2nd and moved to second base on a wild pitch.  Holt smacked a ground-rule double in the 3rd, and SS Jordy Mercer walked and got as far as third base in the 4th.  

1B Miles Durham got the Curve going with a rally in the top of the 5th, when he was hit by a pitch.  Thompson tried for a sacrifice fly, but it turned into a forcer out of Durham at second base, leaving Thompson on first.  Holt singled, then CF Starling Marte tripled into right field, scoring both Thompson and Holt.  LF Quincy Latimore singled into left field, bringing in Marte, to cut the B-Mets’ lead to 5-3.

The Mets made it 6-3 in the bottom of the 5th, but the Curve came right back with another 3 runs in the top of the 6th to tie the game.  A fielding error at shortstop put 3B Jeremy Farrell on base, and Sanchez’s double let Farrell came around to score from first base.  RF Brad Chalk walked, then pinch-hitter Eric Fryer drove in base runners with the second triple of the game.  

Tim Alderson came on to pitch the bottom of the 6th, and he worked around a single, to maintain the tie.  The top of the 7th began with a single by Latimore, and a grounder force out by Mercer, leaving Mercer on first base.  Mercer stole second and then moved to third base on a wild pitch.  Farrell walked, to give the Curve runners on the corners  – and that’s when the storms halted the game.  

The game will resume on Saturday prior to the regularly scheduled game.  This game will finish as a 9-inning game, but the regularly scheduled game will probably be a 7-inning game.  

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Veal Back In Action, Walk-off Win For Curve

Sunday afternoon action with the Pirates’ lower minor league teams:  

Altoona Curve 5,  Akron Aeros  4
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2B Brock Holt singled up the middle in the bottom of the 9th, scoring 1B Miles Durham from second base, for the Curve’s walk-off win.  
Curve starter Aaron Thompson began his outing by facing only the minimum over the first three innings.  He gave up a single in the 2nd, but erased that runner with a double play.  The Aeros scored the first run of the game in the top of the 4th, when they loaded the bases on two singles and a walk before Thompson could record an out.  A sacrifice fly drove in the runner from third, but Thompson got another double play to get out of the inning.   

The first 11 Curve batters also went down in order, until LF Quincy Latimore singled in the 4th.  He was forced out at second on SS Jordy Mercer’s grounder.  The Curve got onto the scoreboard and tied the game when 3B Jeremy Farrell blasted a solo homer to lead off the 4th inning.   

Thompson again retired the side in order in the 5th.  The Aeros took the lead again in the top of the 6th with 2 runs off Thompson.  A single, a stolen base, and another single put runners on the corners with one out.  A wild pitch moved the runner from first to second, though the runner on third had to stay there.  Two more strikeouts drove in two runs, to give Akron a 3-1 lead.  

The Curve answered with one run in the bottom of the 7th.  Mercer and Ferrell led off the inning with singles, and C Tony Sanchez walked to load the bases.  After a pitching change, RF Eric Fryer bounced into a double play, which let Mercer score from third base, though Fryer did not get credit for an RBI.  The Curve added two more in the bottom of the 8th to take the lead.  Pinch-hitter Kris Watts singled up the middle, and was replaced by pinch-runner Brad Chalk.  Holt sacrificed bunted Chalk to second.  CF Starling Marte beat out an infield single, moving Chalk to third, and Marte stole second base to put two Curve runners in scoring position.  Latimore drove in Chalk with a sacrifice fly, an Mercer brought in Marte with an RBI single.  Curve ahead, 4-3.

Mike Dubee relieved Thompson and pitched 2 scoreless innings.  He retired the side in order in the 6th, then gave up just a walk in the 8th.  Noah Krol took over for Dubee for the 9th.  He was charged with a Blown Save when he gave up a solo home run to tie the score.  Then he was credited with the win because he was the pitcher of record in the bottom of the 9th.  The bottom of the frame began with a fly out, then Fryer singled and Durham reached on a fielding error at shortstop, moving Fryer to third.  Chalk bounced to short, giving the Akron shortstop the opportunity to fire back to the plate, and Fryer was tagged out at home.  With Durham on second and Chalk on first, Holt singled into center field, and had the walk-off win when Durham raced around third base to score on the single.  

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Taillon’s First Loss; Marauders And Curve Bombarded

The Power played a double-header this afternoon, and the Curve and Marauders have evening games:

Lexington Legends  4,  West Virginia Power  2    Game 1 
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Jameson Taillon suffered his first pro loss this afternoon, as the Power were one-hit in the first game of their double-header.  Taillon began by giving up a solo homer in the bottom of the 1st.  Lexington scored two more in the 2nd inning with a single, a double, then an RBI ground out and an fielder’s choice and throwing error by 3B Eric Avila.  Taillon had to work around another fielding error, this one by 1B Matt Curry, and a single in the 3rd inning, but he kept Lexington from scoring.  A single, a stolen base, and another single drove in the Legends’ 4th run in the 4th inning.  Taillon gave up a total of 7 hits, no walks, for 4 runs (3 earned) in his 4 innings, and he struck out 4 batters.

The Power threatened in the 2nd inning, when both RF Justin Howard and DH Jairo Marquez walked, but a double play got the Legends out of that inning.  LF Andy Vasquez reached base in the 5th when he was hit by a pitch, but he was picked off first base.  The Power scored their only runs in the 6th, on only one hit.  2B Kevin Mort and LF Rogelios Noris both walked to lead off the inning, then SS Drew Maggi singled to load the bases.  CF Mel Rojas’s grounder force out with a throwing error by the Legends’ shortstop let Mort and Noris score.  Curry also walked, but two strikeouts ended the inning.  

Power  9,  Legends  3    Game 2
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Apparently the Power were saving up their hits and runs for the second game.  They put up 14 hits on the way to 9 runs, while holding Lexington to just 5 hits.  DH Dan Grovatt, 1B Matt Curry, and C Kawika Emsley-Pai each had 3 hits, with homers by Grovatt, Curry, and LF Rogelios Noris.

The Power jumped out to a 5-run lead in the top of the 1st.  With one out, CF Mel Rojas and Grovatt singled, then Curry brought them in with his 3-run homer.  Emsley-Pai singled up the middle, and Noris added his 2-run homer for a 5-0 lead. 

Curry led off the 3rd with a single, and he scored from first on Emsley-Pai’s double.  Noris tripled, plating Emsley-Pai, and a wild pitch let Noris come across the plate.  Power up 8-0.  Dan Grovatt made it 9-0 with a solo home run in the top of the 4th. 

Tyler Waldron made the start in Game 2.  Waldron buzzed through the first two innings, retiring 6 Legends in order.  He loaded the bases in the 3rd, on a walk and two singles, but got a double play to end the frame.  The lead-off batter in the bottom of the 4th homered for the only run Waldron surrendered.  Kevin Decker relieved Waldron to begin the 5th.  He retired the side with two strikeouts and a fly out in that inning, but gave up 2 more runs in the 6th.  A double, a single, and a walk loaded the bases for Lexington.  A sacrifice fly brought in one run, and a throwing error by Decker allowed the second run of the inning to score.  Decker also retired the side in order in the 7th, earning the win.  

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