From Mirror reports
AKRON, Ohio - The Curve opened the second half of the Eastern League season with an impressive all-around showing Thursday night.
Eliecer Navarro and three relievers combined on a shutout, and five players had at least two hits as Altoona blanked Akron, 7-0, at Canal Park. It snapped a three-game losing streak for the Curve, who were off the previous two days for the EL All-Star break.
Alex Dickerson went 2-for-4 with a homer, two RBIs and and two runs, while Drew Maggi was 3-for-4 with one RBI for the Curve. Mel Rojas, Andy Vasquez and Justin Howard had two hits apiece for Altoona.
The Curve won easily despite not playing their two position player All-Stars in second baseman Jarek Cunningham and third baseman Adalberto Santos, who arrived later in the afternoon from New Britain, Conn.
Navarro (2-2) pitched six shutout innings, allowing five hits with one strikeout and no walks. Quinton Miller, Nate Baker and Jason Townsend tossed one inning apiece to complete the shutout.
Tonight: Altoona at Akron, 7:05 p.m.
Pitchers: Curve RHP Nick Kingham (1-2, 3.86) vs. RHP Will Roberts (6-6, 4.46)
Akron starter Brett Brach (5-5) took the loss, allowing two runs in five innings.
Dickerson homered in the second inning to start the Curve's scoring, and he added an RBI single in the ninth as part of a three-run inning.
Dickerson, who now has 10 homers, has raised his average all the way to .266, up from .191 on May 17.
Utility man Oscar Tejeda was promoted back to Triple-A once again Thursday. Tejeda has been shuttled back and forth between Double-A and Triple-A all season, depending on roster needs for each team.
Key player: Curve RF Alex Dickerson went 2-for-4 with a solo homer and RBI single.
Key play: 2B Kelson Brown stole home as part of a double steal in the sixth inning as the Curve scored twice for a 4-0 lead.
Key stat: Dickerson was hitting .191 on May 17 but is all the way up to .266, thanks to a .300 average in June and .387 mark so far this month.
How they scored
Top 2nd: Dickerson solo homer (1-0).
Top 5th: Brown hit by pitch, scored on Vasquez single (2-0).
Top 6th: Cutler walked, scored on Maggi single (3-0); Brown walked, stole home (4-0).
Top 9th: Rojas singled, scored on Dickerson single (5-0); Vasquez reached on fielder's choice, scored on Cutler bases-loaded walk (6-0); Paulino single scored Dickerson (7-0).