Some nice shutout pitching (at least for a few innings) on Saturday evening:
Altoona Curve �9, � Harrisburg Senators �2 (box)
Starter Derek Hankins pitched 5 shutout innings in his start in Harrisburg. �He scattered two doubles and two walks over those 5 innings, and struck out 2 batters. �Tony Watson relieved Hankins to begin the 6th inning, and he also kept the Senators scoreless for the next two innings. �Watson got into some trouble in the 8th, though, giving up a double, a walk, and a single to the first three batters of the inning, loading the bases. �Watson got the next batter to strike out, but then was replaced by Jeff Sues. Sues gave up a sacrifice fly, and then a single, both scoring one run. �Those runs were charged to Watson. �Sues finished the 8th inning with a ground out. �He got two ground outs in the 9th, allowed a walk, then struck out the last batter of the game.
Meanwhile, the Curve batters were busy piling up 15 hits and 9 runs. �LF Alex Presley, who is hitting .471 over his last 10 games and is 8-for-15 in his last 3 games, led the charge by going 4-for-5 tonight, all singles, for 3 RBI. �C Hector Gimenez had 2 doubles and a single, and both 1B Matt Hague and 2B Josh Harrison had two singles each. �Each position player in the starting lineup had at least one hit. �The scoring started slowly, with one run in the 2nd inning. �RF Miles Durham tripled with two outs, then scored on Presley's first single. �They added two more runs in the 4th, when singles by Hague and Harrison, along with a missed catch error on a pick-off attempt, put runners on the corners. �A balk scored Hague, and Presley's second single scored Harrison. �Presley was out at second as he tried to stretch it into a double.
The Senators tried changing pitchers to begin the 6th inning, but it didn't help them. �3B Jordy Mercer led off with a single and moved to second base on a wild pitch. �Matt Hague's single scored Mercer. �A walk to Durham and Presley's third single scored Hague with another run. �Gimenez's double brought in Durham and Presley, and gave the Curve a 7-0 lead. �Walks to pinch-hitter Jim Negrych and CF Gorkys Hernandez loaded the bases, but a fly out ended the inning and left the three runners stranded.
A double by SS Chase d'Arnaud and an RBI single by Hernandez made it 8-0 in the top of the 8th. �The Senators scored twice in the bottom of the frame, but by then it was too little too late. �The Curve added one more for good measure in the top of the 9th. �With two outs, Durham walked, and Presley beat out a grounder to short for his fourth hit. �Gimenez's second double brought in Durham with the Curve's 9th run.