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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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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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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8th Inning Rally For Power; Marauders Win On Chambers’ Homer

The Altoona Curve had a scheduled day off on Monday….

West Virginia Power  9,  Kannapolis Intimidators  8
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Late inning rallies for a total of 7 runs gave the Power the win over Kannapolis.  1B Matt Curry got the scoring started with a solo home run to begin the bottom of the 2nd.  That run was overwhelmed, though, when the Intimidators exploded for 6 runs in the top of the 3rd.  Power starter Zack Von Rosenberg had allowed only one walk over the first two innings, but that fell apart in the 3rd inning.  A single, a walk, and a triple brought in two runs.  A sacrifice fly gave Von Rosenberg the first out of the inning, but it also scored the runner from third, for a 3-1 lead.  Two more singles, another triple, and another single brought in 3 more runs, for a 6-1 lead, and sent Von Rosenberg to the showers.   Zac Fuesser relieved Von Rosenberg, and Fuesser’s first move was to pick off the runner on first base and get him out in a run-down.  A walk and a strikeout ended the inning.  

The Power got one of the runs back in the bottom of the 3rd, on 3B Eric Avila’s double and a fielding error on LF Dan Grovatt’s bouncer to short.  Fuesser gave up a pair of walks and a single in the 4th, but a timely double play kept any runs from scoring.  He also gave up a pair of singles in the 5th, but was aided by an outfield assist from Grovatt.  Kannapolis scored again in the 6th, with a two-out ground-rule double and an RBI single.  Two more doubles gave Kannapolis another run in the top of the 7th, for an 8-2 lead.

Then the Power burst out with 7 unanswered runs over their last two at-bats to take the lead and the win.  With one out, DH Jairo Marquez lined a single into left field, and Avila drove him in with a triple.  SS Drew Maggi’s ground out plated Avila.  2B Kevin Mort singled and pinch-hitter Rogelios Noris walked, but they did not score in that inning.  The Power continued the surge right where they left off in the 8th.  RF Justin Howard led off with a double and CF Mel Rojas was hit by a pitch.  C Kawika Emsley-Pai loaded the bases with a walk.  Marquez drove in Howard with a single grounded into right field, leaving the bases still loaded.  Avila bounced to short, for a force out at second base, but Rojas scored the second run of the inning on the play.  After an out, Mort singled, plating Emsley-Pai, then Noris tripled in both Avila and Mort, for the tying and go-ahead runs.  

Zach Foster relieved Fuesser for the final two innings.  Foster allowed a double and hit a batter with a pitch in the 8th, but two strikeouts left them stranded.   He also walked a batter in the 9th, but got two more strikeouts to preserve the Power lead and earned his first win of the season.  

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Curve Have An Exciting Morning

The Curve played a (mostly) morning game today; the Marauders and the Power play in the evening.

Altoona Curve  13,  Harrisburg Senators  2
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The Curve had a great morning today, blasting away at the Senators with 13 runs on 18 hits.  All but one of the starting lineup had at least one hit, and that one was not starting pitcher Jeff Locke.  Locke singled twice and came around to score, doing his share, and reliever Anthony Claggett also had a hit.  CF Starling Marte, SS Jordy Mercer, and 1B Miles Durham each had 3 hits, and two of Mercer’s hits were home runs.  Mercer contributed 5 RBI, while Durham and RF Jose Hernandez each had 3 RBI.

The game actually began in Harrisburg’s favor.  Marte doubled in the top of the 1st, then moved to third base on a wild pitch, but got no further.  In the bottom of the inning, Locke began by hitting the lead-off man with a pitch, then gave up a single to give Harrisburg runners on the corners.  An RBI ground out brought in the first run, then an RBI single added a second run.  After another single, Locke finished the inning with a tapper back to the mound.  

After that inning, it was all Altoona.  Locke shut down the Senators, retiring the next 12 batters in order.  He gave up a single and a double in the 6th, but left both runners in scoring position.  Locke threw 79 pitches (57 strikes) in earning his second win of the season.  

The Curve put their hitting shoes on in the 3rd.  Locke and 2B Brock Holt led off with back-to-back singles.  That chased the Senators’ starter, and brought in former Indy Indian and Curve Jimmy Barthmaier.  Barthmaier got Marte to ground into a force out at second, but could not get the double play.  Marte stole second base, then Mercer blatsed his first homer, a 3-run shot over the left field wall, to give the Curve a 3-2 lead.  

Locke singled again in the 4th inning, though he was left on base.  Marte singled to begin the 5th, and was moved to second on LF Quincy Latimore’s sacrifice bunt.  Mercer singled, and Marte came around from second base to score.  Mercer stole second, and he scored on C Eric Fryer’s double.  Then Fryer scored on Durham’s 2-run homer for a 4-run inning, giving the Curve a 7-2 lead.  Holt singled and came around to score on Latimore’s RBI single in the 6th.  

The Curve put up another 4-run inning in the 7th.  3B Jeremy Farrell, the only Curve position player without a hit in the game, was hit by a pitch to begin the inning, and Fryer reached base on a fielding error.  Durham doubled, driving in Farrell, then Hernandez’s 3-run homer gave the Curve a 12-2 lead.  Mercer’s second home run, a solo homer, provided the Curve with their final run in the 8th.  

Anthony Claggett relieved Locke in the 7th inning.  He pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the 7th, then worked around a hit batter and a single in the 8th, to keep the Senators from scoring again.  Tim Alderson finished the game for the Curve, with a perfect 9th inning.  

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