Curve Socked By Bowie; Black Is Back; Irwin Strikes Out 10

The Curve had another morning game today.  The Marauders and the Power play on Thursday evening.

Bowie Baysox  4,  Altoona Curve  2
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Starter Aaron Pribanic struggled in this morning’s game, allowing 4 runs on 10 hits and a walk, with only one strikeout in 5 innings.  He suffered his second loss of the season as the Curve lost the series with Bowie, 3 games to 1.

Pribanic had trouble right from the start, when the first Baysox batter of the game tripled into right field.  He scored on a sacrifice fly.  The Curve got the run back in the bottom of the 2nd inning on C Tony Sanchez’s solo home run. 

The Baysox struck again in the top of the 3rd, opening the inning with back-to-back singles.  A grounder to first erased the second runner and left Baysox on the corners.  The runner on first stole second, and when Sanchez’s throw sailed into center field, the runner on third scored on the error.  A walk to former Pirate farmhand C Steve Lerud and a single loaded the bases.  Pribanic then gave up an RBI single to bring in the lead runner.  A double play ended the rally, and Bowie had a 3-1 lead.  

Pribanic gave up a single in the 4th, but left that runner on base.  The 5th inning began with a double into right field.  Lerud followed with an RBI single, to boost Bowie’s lead to 4-1.  Another double play helped Pribanic get out of the 5th.  

After that, the Curve bullpen shut down the Baysox.  Matt McSwain pitched 3 scoreless innings of relief, working around a single in the 6th and another in the 7th.  He retired the side in order in the 8th.  Noah Krol pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the top of the 9th.  

Unfortunately, after scoring in the 2nd inning, the Curve batters were also shut down for most of the rest of the game.  2B Brock Holt had singled and stole second base in the 1st inning, then moved to third base on a throwing error by Lerud.  Holt was left standing there on third base when the inning ended.  SS Shelby Ford singled in the 5th but was erased in a double play.  RF Jose Hernandez also singled in the 5th.  CF Starling Marte led off the 6th with a double, and he also doubled in the 8th inning, but both times he was left stranded.   

The Curve rallied again in the bottom of the 9th.  DH Eric Fryer led off with a walk, and 3B Jeremy Farrell singled.  A wild pitch moved both runners into scoring position, and Fryer scored on a sacrifice fly.  The game ended with a strikeout, before the rally could gain any more momentum. 

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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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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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Hit-Fest In Bradenton; Curve Pitchers Throw A Shutout

Friday night’s action:

Altoona Curve 2,  Akron Aeros  0
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Three Curve pitchers combined to throw a 3-hit shutout of the Aeros.  Starter Mike Colla had to work around runners on base in 5 of his 6 innings, but he held the Aeros scoreless and earned his second win.  He scattered 3 hits, 2 walks, and one hit batter over those innings.  The only inning in which Akron had 2 runners on base was the 3rd, when Colla walked two.  Anthony Claggett also gave up two walks in the 8th, after a 1-2-3 inning in the 7th, but he did not allow a hit or a run.  Noah Krol picked up his 9th Save with three quick ground outs in the 9th.

The Curve posted 11 hits, but scored only two runs (8 runners left on base).  In the bottom of the 1st, with two outs, LF Quincy Latimore looped a single into right field, then scored from first on SS Jordy Mercer’s ringing double into center field.  C Tony Sanchez singled and DH Kris Watts doubled in the 2nd inning, but Sanchez was out at the plate on the throw in from left field.  The Curve added an unearned run in the 3rd.  2B Brock Holt led off the inning with a strikeout, but he reached first when strike three was a wild pitch.  Holt stole second base, then scored when the Akron center fielder made an error on Mercer’s ball.

The Curve put runners on base in each inning after that, but could not bring any of them around to score.  Sanchez and 1B Miles Durham both singled in the 4th inning, and that was the only inning after the 3rd when the Curve had two runners on base.  CF Starling Marte singled twice, Watts singled, and Mercer doubled again.

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Homers And Wins For Everyone

Wins for everyone in the Pirates’ minor league system on Saturday… and each of these winners scored 6 runs:

Altoona Curve  6,  Erie SeaWolves  5
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The Curve rallied with 4 runs in the bottom of the 8th, for a come-from-behind win, extending their winning streak to four games.  Starter Mike Colla went 5 innings and allowed one run on 5 hits and a walk, with 5 strikeouts.  Colla allowed only one hit over the first three innings.  The top of the 4th began with a single, a walk, and a single to load the bases.  After a strikeout, a single lined into left field drove in one run.  A strikeout and a ground out ended the inning.  

The Curve came back with 2 runs in the bottom of the frame.  CF Starling Marte had singled in the 1st inning, and the Curve had loaded the bases with two outs in the 2nd, on a walk by DH Kris Watts, and singles by 1B Miles Durham and RF Eric Fryer.  All four runners were left on base.  3B Jeremy Farrell started the 4th inning by being hit by a pitch.  C Tony Sanchez doubled into right field, scoring Fryer from first.  Watts’ ground out moved Sanchez to third, then Durham lined a single into left field, bringing in Sanchez.  The Curve had a 2-1 lead.  

Brian Leach took over for Colla for the 6th inning, and retired the side in order.  Anthony Claggett came on for the 7th, which started well, with two outs.  Then a walk, a stolen base, and an RBI single tied the game at 2-2.  Claggett remained in the game to begin the 8th inning, but he quickly got into trouble, allowing a pair of doubles and a single, for one run and one out.  Claggett was ejected after the single (no details, sorry), and Michael Dubee took over for him.  Dubee gave up an RBI single and an RBI double, to give Erie a 5-2 lead.

The Curve came charging back in the bottom of the inning.  With one out, LF Quincy Latimore walked, and SS Jordy Mercer brought them both in with a 2-run homer.  Farrell singled after the homer, and Sanchez tied the score when he drove in Farrell with a triple.  Brad Chalk came in to pinch-hit for Sanchez, and he scored on Watts’ RBI single, to give the Curve the lead.  

Noah Krol pitched the final inning.  He gave up a pair of singles, but kept the SeaWolves from scoring to hold on to the win.  Dubee was credited with the win, and Krol earned his 8th Save of the season. 

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