AKRON, Ohio - The Curve have been playing forgettable baseball lately, but one of their more prominent alums had a memorable moment this past week.
Slugger Brad Eldred belted the 300th home run of his professional career recently while playing in Japan. Eldred has 251 home runs in the minor leagues, 15 in the majors and now has 35 in Japan, giving him 301 total.
Eldred hit a whopping 30 of those home runs in only 60 games with the Curve from 2004-05. So far this season he's hitting .366 with 11 homers and 36 RBIs in 35 games for Hiroshima in the Japanese major leagues.
The Curve, on the other hand, have seen their season slowly start to slip away as they're now eight games below .500 after a 2-0 loss to Akron on Saturday night at Canal Park. Altoona managed only two hits and lost for the ninth time in 11 games.
The RubberDucks have now beaten the Curve nine straight times - three in this series, a four-game sweep in Altoona last week and two more at the end of April. Akron is 10-2 all told this season against the Curve.
Nick Kingham gave up two runs on seven hits in five innings Saturday to take the loss, his third straight. Kingham didn't pitch all that bad, but he received no support from his offense.
Tonight: Altoona at Akron, 2:05 p.m.
Pitchers: Curve RHP A.J. Morris (2-0, 1.11) vs. RubberDucks RHP Will Roberts (4-2, 3.57)
Akron scored a run in the fourth and another in the fifth off Kingham, who gave up seven hits, struck out six and walked three.
RubberDucks starter Joe Colon (2-2) had no trouble with Altoona's offense as he allowed just one hit in six innings. Two relievers finished off the shutout, with Kyle Crockett working the ninth for his sixth save.
Matt Curry and Drew Maggi collected Altoona's only hits. Keon Broxton (0-for-2) saw his nine-game hitting streak end, while Jarek Cunningham (0-for-3) had his eight-game streak snapped.
Key player: RHP Joe Colon shut out the Curve on one hit for six innings.
Key play: C Alex Lavisky singled home the only run Akron needed in the fourth.
Key stat: The Curve have lost nine consecutive games against Akron.
How they scored
Bottom 4th: Wolters singled, scored on Lavisky single (0-1).
Bottom 5th: Lindor doubled, scored on LaHair single (0-2).