TRENTON, N.J. - Jameson Taillon dominated in his Curve debut to help the team get on the right kind of streak on the road.
Taillon, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2010 draft, pitched five shutout innings, allowed four hits and struck out six with no walks Tuesday night against Trenton. The big right-hander also showed stellar control, throwing 46 of his 67 pitches for strikes.
"Definitely good first one," Taillon told reporters after the game.
Taillon's offense, led by Matt Curry, gave him a lot of support early, and the Curve coasted to a 5-0 win over the Thunder at Waterfront Park. That's now two wins in a row on the road following a franchise-record 13-game losing skid away from home.
There's also this: Trenton has the second-best record in the Eastern League at 73-56, yet the Curve have beaten the Thunder five straight times. That's yet another indication the 13-game road losing streak was more of an incredible anomaly as opposed to the Curve just being a bad team.
Taillon went primarily fastball and curveball in blanking Trenton's hitters and said he only threw about five changeups. He noted the curveball wasn't working that well in his pregame bullpen session, but he had it going effectively once the game started.
Taillon struck out the first batter he faced in Double-A, Adonis Garcia, then gave up a double to JR Murphy but got out of the inning on a line drive double play.
Taillon later struck out four batters in a row between the second and third innings. He ran into trouble in the fourth after a pair of one-out singles but was helped out by Luke Murton getting thrown out at second base as the lead runner went to third.
Taillon (1-0) finished his night with an easy 1-2-3 inning in the fifth.
"Having my first start at the level, just go out there and kind of see what the hitters gave me," he said of his game plan. "Everyone this whole four days I've been up here has just said go out there and do your thing. They don't miss the mistakes as much as previous levels, but it's still baseball - 60 feet, 6 inches - so just go out there and chuck the ball and have some fun."
Taillon admitted he was a little surprised to be promoted to Double-A so late in the season.
"Yeah, a little bit honestly," he said. "I had been pitching pretty well my last couple starts down [at high-A Bradenton], and I was definitely excited to get the call."
As for the start overall, he said, "Pleased not satisfied. I've still got two more starts on the year, and I'd like to go out there and keep throwing the ball well, carry this over."
Hunter Strickland pitched three scoreless innings of relief after Taillon before Vic Black finished off the shutout in the ninth.
Trenton starter Brett Marshall allowed four runs on nine hits in six innings to take the loss.
Curry singled home a run in the first inning and doubled home two in the third to help the Curve take control early.
Key player: RHP Jameson Taillon pitched five shutout innings in his Double-A debut, giving up four hits with six strikeouts and no walks.
Key play: 1B Matt Curry doubled home two runs in the third for a 3-0 lead.
Key stat: The Curve have won five in a row against Trenton, which has the EL's second-best record.
How they scored
Top 1st: Santos singled, scored on Curry single (1-0).
Top 3rd: Cabrera singled, Lambo singled, both scored on Curry double (3-0).
Top 4th: Latimore doubled, scored on Santos groundout (4-0).
Top 9th: Santos struck out and reached on Rondon wild pitch, scored on Tejeda single (5-0).