OverPowering the Tourists

The Altoona Curve had a scheduled day off today, and the Bradenton Marauders and Brevard County Manatees were rained out, so the Power were the only ones in the lower part of the organization in action. �The Marauders and Manatees will play a double header on Tuesday, beginning at noon.

Four Power players were named to the South Atlantic League �2010 North Division All-Star Team: � LHP Nathan Baker, C Ramon Cabrera, OF David Rubinstein, and 1B�Aaron Baker, who was named to the team as the DH. � �The All-Star Game will be held on June 22nd in Greenville.

West Virginia Power �12, �Asheville Tourists �4 (box)

LF Rogelios Noris led the way with 3 hits and 3 RBI as the Power scored 9 runs in the late innings to send the Tourists packing.

Asheville had the early lead, scoring 3 runs in the 1st inning off Power starter Brandon Holden. �A single, a stolen base, back-to-back doubles, and back-to-back singles brought in the 3 runs, all with just one out. �Holden got it out of his system in that inning, though. �He retired the Tourists in order over the next three innings, gave up a single in the 5th but caught that runner stealing, then retired the side in order to finish up in the 6th inning. �Holden did not allow any walks, and struck out one batter in his 6 innings.

The Power had only one batter reach base over the first three innings. �C Ramon Cabrera reached base on a fielding error in the 2nd, but was left stranded. �1B Aaron Baker scored the first Power run with a solo homer in the 4th inning. �Rogelios Noris singled and Cabrera walked after the home run, but a double play ended the inning with the Power trailing 3-1.

CF Evan Chambers tied the game in the 5th inning with another home run. �He brought RF Jose Hernandez in with him, and the score was 3-3.

The Power took the lead in the 7th. �SS Benji Gonzalez led off with a single, then stole second base for his 8th swipe of the season. �After a walk and a fly out, Baker walked, and Noris brought both Gonzalez and Noris in with a double into left field. �Noris stole third (his first stolen base of the season), and he scored easily when Cabrera singled. �The inning ended when Cabrera was thrown out trying to steal second base, but the Power had taken a 6-3 lead.

The top of the 8th brought a Power explosion, as 10 batters came to the plate, scoring 6 runs. �After a strikeout, Hernandez began the fun with a walk, and DH Kyle Morgan doubled, moving Hernandez to third. �A line out back to the pitcher made the runners hold their positions, but that meant that all of the scoring happened with 2 outs. �Chambers walked to load the bases. �2B Jarek Cunningham singled up the middle, scoring Hernandez and Morgan (2 runs). �A passed ball moved the runners up to second and third. �Baker walked, but ball four was a wild pitch, so Chambers scored from third (3). �A new relief pitcher didn’t help Asheville’s situation — Noris greeted the new pitcher with a double, plating Cunningham (4). �A single by Cabrera and a missed catch error at first base brought in Baker and Noris (6) to complete the scoring. �Power up 12-3.

Mike Williams took over for Holden on the mound for the final 3 innings. �Williams pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the 7th. �A missed catch error by 1B Baker and a fielding error by CF Chambers put two runners on in the 8th. �A single gave the Tourists one more run, but a fly out and a pick-off/caught stealing ended the inning. �Williams worked around a single in the 9th but kept the Tourists from scoring again, and he was awarded his first save of the season.

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Late-Inning Rallies Sting Curve; Power Explode in Late Innings

New Hampshire Fisher Cats �5, �Altoona Curve �3 (box)

The Curve took the early lead with a 3-run 2nd inning, but two late-inning 2-run rallies gave the Fisher Cats the win on Saturday. �Curve batters took advantage of walks in the 2nd inning. �They loaded the bases with no outs on a double by 1B Matt Hague, 2B Jordy Mercer being hit by a pitch, and a walk to DH Jim Negrych. LF Alex Presley singled up the middle, scoring both Hague and Mercer. �Walks to C Kris Watts and SS Chase d’Arnaud forced in the third run of the inning.

Unfortunately, that was all the scoring the Curve would do. �They put runners on base in several other innings, but could not push any of them around to score. �They came closest in the 8th, when Hague and Mercer both singled in the 8th, and a throwing error got Hague as far as third base, but he got no further. �Presley singled to lead off the 4th, but could not advance. �Mercer walked in the 3rd, but was erased in the double play, and Hague walked in the 5th. �In their final chance, Watts walked with two outs in the 9th, but a strikeout by d’Arnaud ended the game.

Starter Bryan Morris pitched 6 dominating innings, but was not involved in the decision. �He allowed only two hits in those 6 innings, a single in the 2nd inning, and a solo homer to 3B Shawn Bowman in the 4th. �Morris also allowed a walk in the 6th, and he struck out 4 batters.

Jeff Sues took over for Morris to begin the 7th, and that’s when the Fisher cats were able to make their move. �After a strikeout, Sues gave up a ground-rule double, a wild pitch, and two walks, loading the bases. �He was relieved by Mike Dubee. The first batter Dubee faced grounded right up the middle, and though Dubee tried to get it, the ball was deflected off his glove as it zoomed into center field, scoring two runners to tie the score at 3-3. �Dubee got out of the inning with a strikeout and a ground out. �But the Fisher Cats came right back at Dubee in the 8th. �Four consecutive singles led off the inning, driving in two more runs and New Hampshire took the lead. �The Curve could not answer in the 9th, and the Fisher Cats had the win.

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Hernandez Homers, Owens Wins #6

Friday night business…. the State College Spikes (Short-season A level) begin their season two weeks from today. �The Gulf Coast League Pirates, who will share McKechnie Field with the Marauders, begin their season on June 21st.

While the team rosters have not been formally announced yet, there have been some player moves: �C/INF Andrew Walker and INF Anthony Norman have been moved from the Marauders to the State College roster. � LHP Eliecer Navarro has been moved onto the Marauders’ roster from the GCL Pirates’ roster. �Also, Marauders’ INF Greg Picart has been reactivated from the disabled list (hand injury).

Altoona Curve �6, �New Hampshire Fisher Cats �1 (box)

The Curve began their series in New Hampshire with a win, boosting their lead in the Eastern League Western Division to 9 games over Bowie, Harrisburg, and Richmond, who are all tied for second place.

SS Chase d’Arnaud and CF Gorkys Hernandez got the Curve off to a good start with back-to-back singles in the top of the 1st. �3B Josh Harrison grounded into a double play which erased Hernandez but moved d’Arnaud to third base, and 1B Matt Hague’s single through the hole into left field scored d’Arnaud with the first run of the game. �They added another run in the 2nd on a one-out triple by LF Alex Presley and a double by DH Shelby Ford.

The game picked up some controversy in the 4th inning, when Fisher Cats’ 3B Shawn Bowman led off with a long fly ball that seemed to fly over the left field wall… but then bounced back onto the field of play. �Home run or a bounce off the top of the fence? �The umpires ruled it a homer, and Curve manager Matt Walbeck was ejected when he argued a little too vociferously. �Walbeck got his revenge in the 5th, when CF Danny Perales hit another long fly, this one to right field, for what he thought was a game-tying home run. �But while Perales had slowed to a home-run trot, the umpires ruled that this ball had hit the wall and so was still in play. �Curve RF Miles Durham threw the ball in to the infield, catching Perales by surprise between second and third bases, where he was tagged out after a brief run-down.

After that, it was all Altoona. �The Curve loaded the bases in the 6th on walks to Hague and 2B Jordy Mercer, and a single by C Hector Gimenez. Presley’s RBI ground out brought in Hague, and Durham walked to load the bases again. �Ford greeted the New Hampshire reliever with a line drive into center field, driving in both Mercer and Gimenez to give the Curve a 5-1 lead. �After another grounder force out, Hernandez walked, loading the bases for the third time in the inning. �The third time was not a charm, though, as a fly out ended the inning.

Hernandez added an insurance run in the top of the 9th when he led off with his first home run of the season. �The Curve recorded 12 hits, including 2 each from d’Arnaud (single and double), Hernandez (single and homer), Gimenez, Presley (single and triple), and Ford (single and double).

Rudy Owens earned his 6th win for the Curve, going 6.1 innings and allowing only that solo home run plus 4 other hits and 3 walks. �He did not have more than one Fisher Cats’ base runner on base at one time until the 7th inning, when he struck out the first batter, then gave up a walk and a single. �That was the point at which he was relieved by Derek Hankins. Hankins threw a wild pitch to move the runners to second and third bases, then walked a batter to load the bases with two outs. �But he got a ground out to first to end the inning without letting any of those three runners to score. �Hankins allowed just one single over the next two innings, as he earned his first save of the season.

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Presley and Harrison Spark Curve and Farrell’s Homer Boosts Marauders

Altoona Curve �5, �New Britain Rock Cats �4 (box)

A 2-2 tie brought on a busy 10th inning for the Curve and the Rock Cats, but it was the Curve who came out on top. �Tony Watson had pitched two scoreless innings in the 8th and the 9th, and he was still the pitcher of record in the 10th inning.

RF/LF Alex Presley opened�the 10th inning with a solo home run over the right field wall to break the tie. �Two outs later, SS Chase d’Arnaud singled into left field, and CF Gorkys Hernandez followed with another single through the hole into left field. �A wild pitch moved both runners into scoring position for 3B Josh Harrison, who came through with a liner into left, scoring both d’Arnaud and Hernandez on the single. �The Curve had a 5-2 lead.

Reliever Danny Moskos and Harrison made things interesting in the bottom of the inning. �With two outs, Harrison made a fielding error on a ball off the bat of RF Mark Dolenc, extending the inning. �A single by DH Rene Tosoni (remember him from Team USA?) and a fielding error by Hernandez in center field brought in Dolenc and put a Tosoni on third. �1B Erik Lis singled into center, scoring Tosoni and making it a one-run game. A passed ball by C Hector Gimenez moved Lis to second base, but Moskos ended the game with a fly out. �Moskos earned his lucky 13th save, and Watson earned his second win.

Presley, Hernandez, Gimenez, and Presley each had 2 hits in the game, with 2 RBI by Presley and 3 RBI by Harrison. �The Curve’s first run came in the top of the 1st, on a double by d’Arnaud, a throwing error on a pick-off attempt that put d’Arnaud to third base, and an RBI grounder by Harrison. �Singles by 1B Matt Hague, Gimenez, and Presley added another run in the 4th.

Starter Tim Alderson pitched 6 innings and allowed one run on 5 hits and 2 walks. �The run came on a solo homer by Erik Lis to lead off the 2nd inning. �The Rock Cats added two more singles in that inning, but those two runners did not come around to score. �Alderson also gave up singles in the 3rd and the 5th innings, but Gimenez threw out both runners trying to steal second base.

Jimmy Barthmaier made his first AA rehab start, but it did not go as well as he’d hoped. �He gave up a walk and a single, then got a sacrifice bunt. �Another single drove in the tying run, and that was all for Barthmaier. �Tony Watson came in to finish the inning. �He got CF Ben Revere to line right to Harrison at third base, who then doubled the runner off third for a double play.

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Alderson Is POW, Hughes Earns 8th Win

Curve pitcher Tim Alderson was named the Eastern League’s Pitcher Of The Week, for the week of May 24 – 30. �Alderson won two starts during that week, on the 24th and the 29th. �In 13 innings of work, he gave up only one run on 8 hits and 3 walks, with a total of 10 strikeouts. �His ERA for the two games was 0.69. �Overall, Alderson has a 4-2 record and a 4.75 ERA in 10 starts for the Curve.

Reliever Ronald Uviedo, who has made 16 appearances for the Curve this season, was traded today to the Blue Jays in return for starter Dana Eveland, who will be joining the Pirates’ rotation. �Uviedo was on the Pirates’ 40-man roster, so trading him opens up a space on the 40-man roster for Eveland. �Uviedo has an 0-2 record with the Curve, no saves, and a 3.22 ERA in 22.1 innings. �He has allowed 13 hits, 8 runs (3 homers), and 12 walks, while striking out 28 batters.

Altoona Curve �4, �New Britain Rock Cats �1 (box)

Jared Hughes pitched 7 strong innings, allowing only one run on 5 hits and a walk, while striking out 6 batters, to earn his Eastern League-leading 8th win of the season. �Hughes gave up the run in the 1st inning. �A lead-off single, a stolen base, a sacrifice fly, and an RBI ground out gave the Rock Cats their only tally of the game. �Hughes gave up a double in each of the next two innings, and a single in the 4th, but each time worked around the base runner to keep the Rock Cats from scoring. �The last single plus the walk came in the 6th inning, but again Hughes bore down and ended the inning with the runners still standing there. �He finished off his night with two strikeouts in the 7th inning.

The Curve put runners on base in each of the first 4 innings, but could not push them around to score. �Two singles by CF Gorkys Hernandez, walks by 1B Matt Hague and RF Miles Durham, and a double by LF Alex Presley were not enough to bring in any runs. �Finally in the 3rd, the Curve tied the score at 1-1 when C Kris Watts led off with a double, moved to third on SS Chase d’Arnaud’s single, and scored on Hernandez’s sacrifice fly. �A walk to DH Jim Negrych and a single by Hague loaded the bases, but all three were left on base when the inning ended.

D’Arnaud got the go-ahead RBI in the 6th. �Presley and Durham led off with back-to-back singles. �A bunt by Watts went a little awry, and Durham was out at second, but Presley made it safely to third and Watts was safe on first. �That set up d’Arnaud, who lined a double into left field, scoring Presley, for the 2-1 lead.

The Curve tacked on two insurance runs in the top of the 9th. �Negrych reached second base on a throwing error by the Rock Cats’ third baseman Juan Portes. �Hague walked, then 2B Jordy Mercer grounded to third base. �Portes made the force out of Negrych at third, but then made a throwing error, and Hague ended up on third, with Mercer safe on second. �A wild pitch allowed Hague to score, and a single by 3B Josh Harrison brought in Mercer.

Jeff Sues pitched a scoreless 8th inning for the Curve, retiring the side in order. �Danny Moskos finished things off by striking out the side in the 9th, earning his 12th save of the season.

The Curve have a school-day special in New Britain tomorrow, with the game beginning at 10:30 am.

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