Curve All-Stars Named; Alvarez Homers

Five Curve players have been named to the Eastern League /Western Division All-Star team.  RHP Aaron Pribanic, LHP Jeff Locke, 2B Brock Holt, 3B Jeremy Farrell, and OF Starling Marte.  Also, because the Curve won the Western Division last year, the Curve coaching staff will be coaching the division’s team :  manager PJ Forbes, pitching coach Wally Whitehurst, hitting coach Brandon Moore, and trainer Mike Zaino.  The game will be played on Wednesday July 13th at Manchester, NH (home of the Fisher Cats).  

Friday’s action for the Pirates’ lower minor league affiliates …. the GCL Pirates’ game was postponed.   

Bradenton Marauders  3,  Palm Beach Cardinals  2
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Rehabbing 3B Pedro Alvarez provided the firepower, while Brandon Cumpton earned his first win with the Marauders tonight.  The plan was for Joe Beimel, also on a rehab assignment, to pitch for one inning to begin the game.  Beimel retired the Cardinals in order in the top of the 1st, with two strikeouts and a fly out.  He then gave way to Cumpton, who pitched 6 scoreless innings, scattering 4 hits and 2 walks.  Cumpton had two runners on base in only one inning, the 3rd, when two singles and a wild pitch put both runners into scoring position.  Cumpton struck out the next batter to escape the jam.  

The Marauders put two runners on base in the 1st when both RF Robbie Grossman and Alvarez walked, then again put two on in the 2nd, on a single by DH Adalberto Santos and a walk to C Jairo Marquez.  2B Jarek Cunningham also singled in the 3rd, but none of those runners could make it around to score.  All of the Marauders’ runs came in the bottom of the 5th.  Marquez led off with a double lined into center field.  SS Benji Gonzalez dropped down a sacrifice bunt to move Marquez to third base.  Cunningham doubled into left field, and Marquez scored easily from third.  Then Alvarez blasted a 2-run homer over the left field wall to give the Marauders a 3-0 lead.  
Cumpton came back out to begin the top of the 8th.  He faced only two batters, though, giving up a single and a 2-run homer to bring the Cardinals within one run, 3-2.  Cumpton was relieved by Duke Welker, who ended the 8th with three ground outs.  

The Marauders would have liked an insurance run or two, but had only a walk by Grossman in the 7th, then a single by Cunningham and Santos reaching on catcher interference in the 8th.  It turned out to not matter, as Welker pitched a scoreless 9th to seal the win and earn his second save of the season.  

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Curve Scoreless Again, Marauders Bomb Mets

Some Sunday action in the Pirates’ minor league organization… the GCL Pirates had the day off.

Harrisburg Senators  6,  Altoona Curve  0
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The Curve were again held scoreless this afternoon.  That means that in the last 5 games (44 innings), the Curve have scored just one run.   Today the team was held to 3 hits, and those were the only Curve batters to reach base.  The first 10 batters were retired in order.  2B Brock Holt doubled in the 4th inning, then the next 6 batters were retired.  Pinch-hitter Brad Chalk singled in the 6th, and was out at second when CF Starling Marte grounded into a force out.  The Curve also went down in order in the 7th and 8th innings.  Marte doubled with one out in the 9th, but two fly outs left Marte still standing on second base when the game ended.

Phillip Irwin made the start for Altoona.  He allowed two singles over the first two innings, but ran into difficulty in the 4th.  A single began the inning, then Irwin recorded two outs.  That was followed by an RBI single, a double, a 2-RBI single, and a throwing error.  One more run scored on a wild pitch, to give the Senators a 4-0 lead.  Irwin finished his afternoon with those 4 runs (3 earned) on 6 hits, no walks, with 6 strikeouts in 5 innings of work.  

Bryan Morris relieved Irwin and pitched 2 scoreless innings, allowing a walk and a single in the 7th.  Tim Alderson pitched the 8th, and gave up a single and a 2-run homer for the Senators’ final two runs.  

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Latimore Leads Curve To Win; Spikes Win Their First

Less action than usual for a Sunday afternoon — the Bradenton Marauders are still on their All-Star break, and the game between the West Virginia Power and the Lakewood BlueClaws was cancelled due to wet grounds at Appalachian Power Park.  The South Atlantic League All-Star Game will be held on Tuesday. 

Altoona Curve  4,  Harrisburg Senators  1
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LF Quincy Latimore and RF Anthony Norman posted 2 hits each, and Latimore scored 3 of the Curve’s 4 runs as Altoona took the win.  Latimore’s first hit was a double lined into left field in the bottom of the 2nd inning.  He scored on Norman’s single.  The two combined again in the 4th inning for another run.  With two outs, Latimore walked, then Norman singled into right field.  When the Harrisburg right fielder made a throwing error, Latimore had the chance to round third and score.  Latimore homered to lead off the 7th inning, and at that point, he was responsible for all of the Curve runs.  

With former Pirate farmhand Jimmy Barthmaier on the mound for Harrisburg in the 8th, CF Starling Marte began the inning with a single.  Marte advanced to second base on a ground out by 3B Jeremy Farrell, then he stole third base.  C Tony Sanchez’s RBI single up the middle brought Marte in to score the final run for the Curve.  

Phillip Irwin made the start for the Curve and pitched 6 scoreless innings.  He hit a batter in the top of the 1st, then retired the next 13 Harrisburg batters, until he gave up a lone single in the 5th.  He allowed a single and a walk in the 6th, for the biggest threat he had faced, but left both on base to end the inning.   Bryan Morris relieved Irwin to begin the 7th inning.  He put the side down in order in that inning, but gave up an unearned run in the 8th.  A throwing error by Sanchez, a double, and an RBI ground out brought in the run.  Morris allowed a single in the 9th, but did not allow another run to score.  Irwin won his first game of the season, and Morris earned his third Save. 

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Six-Run Inning Not Enough Power; Marauders Earn Shut Out

The Altoona Curve had a scheduled day off on Monday, but the Power and the Marauders were in action.

Delmarva Shorebirds  10,  West Virginia Power  7
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A 6-run offensive blast by the Power was enough to tie the score, but not enough for the win.  Delmarva got the game started with a 3-run homer off Zack Von Rosenberg in the top of the 1st, after a double and a single.  Von Rosenberg put runners on base in the next two innings but did not let them come around to score.  A walk and a 2-run homer increased the Shorebirds’ lead to 5-0 with one out in the 4th.  A single and a walk followed that homer, and Von Rosenberg was relieved by Porfirio Lopez.  Lopez finished the 4th, but gave up two more runs in the 5th on a single, a walk, a balk, another single, and a fielding error by SS Drew Maggi.  

The Power led off each of the first four innings with a hit:  singles by Maggi (1st), 1B Chase Lyles (2nd), and 3B Eric Avila (3rd), and a double by LF Dan Grovatt (4th).  Grovatt was the only one who scored, on RF Justin Howard’s RBI  single.  The Power went into the bottom of the 5th trailing 7-1, and that’s when the fireworks started.  With one out, Avila walked, Maggi doubled, and 2B Kevin Mort walked, to load the bases.  Grovatt tapped back to the mound, where the Shorebirds’ pitcher thought he could get a force out at the plate.  Instead, he made a fielding error, and Avila scored.  A wild pitch brought in Maggi, then Howard walked to load the bases again.  Lyles’ RBI single into center field plated Mort with the third run of the inning.  C Kawika Emsley-Pai was hit by a pitch, forcing in Grovatt, and after a pitching change, DH Elias Diaz brought in both Howard and Lyles with a 2-RBI single, to tie the score at 7-7.  After a fly out, Avila’s second walk of the inning loaded the bases again, but a ground out by Maggi ended the inning.  

Zac Fuesser took over on the mound for the 6th, which was scoreless (for both teams).  The top of the 7th began with a missed catch error by Lyles at first.  Fuesser’s balk pushed that runner to second base, and a bunt advanced him to third.  He scored on an RBI double, then a walk, two singles, and a fielding error by RF Howard added two more runs.  

Casey Sadler pitched the 8th inning for the Power.  He gave up a double and hit a batter, but got out of the inning without a run scoring.  The Power put two runner on in the 7th, when Lyles  and Diaz both walked, but a double play and a fly out ended that inning.  They threatened again in the bottom of the 9th.  Grovatt singled, but was erased in a double play.  Then Lyles walked and Emsley-Pai and Diaz singled to load the bases, but a strikeout ended the game.  

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Tough Afternoon In Altoona; Von Rosenberg’s First Win

The Curve played an early game on Wednesday afternoon, with the Marauders and the Power playing in the evening: 

Trenton Thunder  7,  Altoona Curve  3
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A 4-run 6th inning by the Thunder was too much for the Curve to overcome, in an early afternoon game in New Jersey.  The Curve posted 11 hits, with Brad Chalk, playing center field today, collecting 3 hits.  LF Quincy Latimore, 1B Matt Curry, and 3B Jeremy Farrell all had 2 hits each.   

Each team scored one run in the 1st inning.  Chalk began the Curve rally with his first single, but was forced out at second on Latimore’s grounder force out at second.  A throwing error by the second baseman on the play let Latimore reach second base.  SS Jordy Mercer singled into right field, scoring Latimore.  Two singles and a grounder force out gave the Thunder a run in the bottom of the inning to tie the game.  

Latimore also double in the 3rd inning, but didn’t score.  Curry began a rally in the top of the 4th when he worked a walk.  Farrell singled, pushing Curry to third base, and a passed ball let Farrell move up to second base.  DH Tony Sanchez’s RBI ground out scored Curry to give the Curve a 2-1 lead.   Trenton tied it up again in the bottom of the 5th, with a single, a throwing error by starter Aaron Thompson, and a sacrifice fly.  

Chalk singled again in the 5th, but was out in a force play.  The Curve threatened in the top of the 6th.  Curry, Farrell, and Sanchez hit three consecutive singles to load the bases with one out.  C Kris Watts grounded to first for a fielder’s choice as a throw back to the plate forced Curry out at home.  A ground out ended the inning, leaving the bases loaded.  

Trenton got to Thompson again in the bottom of the 6th.  With one out, a single, a stolen base, and an RBI single gave Trenton a 3-2 lead.  Matt McSwain relieved Thompson, but the first batter McSwain faced reached base on a fielding error by Curry.  The next batter swatted a 3-run homer, giving Trenton a 6-2 lead.

The Curve got one run back in the top of the 7th.  Chalk and Latimore hit back-to-back line drive singles with one out.  Mercer popped up for an infield fly rule out, then Curry’s single through the hole and into left field brought Chalk in to score.  That was all the Curve could get, though.  Sanchez walked to begin the 8th inning, and was erased on a double play, and the next four Altoona batters went down in order.  

McSwain gave up one more run in the bottom of the 7th, on a two-out triple and an RBI single.  Thompson was charged with his 5th loss of the season.  

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