Taillon solid in return from neck injury; Curve win

Baseball is a game full of rankings.

Home run leaders, strikeout leaders, RBI leaders, fastest prospects, best arms – all of these are among what seems to be one million things that can be ranked in the game.

Curve manager Carlos Garcia ranked Jameson Taillon’s start on Wednesday one of his top five this year.

Taillon went five innings in his first game back from neck discomfort, striking out six as the Curve downed Binghamton for the first time at home this year, 3-2, before 3,240 at Peoples Natural Gas Field.

“This is going to be one of the top five of the year,” Garcia said. “No doubt about it.”

Taillon, who was a pitch/innings limit, threw 73 pitches in five innings. Seventy-five pitches or five innings was his limit.

It was his first appearance since July 18 after being sidelined with the neck issue.

“I felt good,” Taillon said. “Probably my worst bullpen of the year, but I felt good so I didn’t sweat it too much. When I rolled out there, the adrenaline kicked in, and the inner animal came out. I was going to be fine, and I was going to get after it just fine.”

Taillon said he experienced no discomfort in his neck, something with which he has had issues before this season. He went from June 4 to June 16 without a start earlier this season.

He did say that he was a little tired, not in the arm or neck, but from lack of conditioning.

“It felt good,” Taillon said of the neck. “It was really a couple day thing. After that, it felt good, and I had to build my way back up.”

Taillon allowed four hits over the five innings, striking out six and walking none. It was the ninth time in 20 appearances this season Taillon has struck out six or more.

He has pitched 110 innings so far this season and struck out 106.

“That was good to see him come back and throw the ball very well, throw the ball over the plate with conviction,” Garcia said. “He was able to give us five strong innings.”

Taillon didn’t get the decision in Wednesday’s game. The win went to Zach Thornton, who pitched two innings of relief. Luis Sanz got his 13th save this year.

The only inning that Taillon struggled with was his last inning, the fifth. He gave up one run in the inning and two hits, the most in an inning in the game for Taillon.

He allowed just two hits in the other four innings combined.

“He threw the ball well,” pitching coach Stan Kyles said. “I don’t rate his performances, but he sure looked good tonight.”

Game recap

Key player: RHP Jameson Taillon went five innings, striking out six.

Key play: RF Alex Dickerson singled in Adalberto Santos, breaking a 2-2 tie.

Key stat: Wednesday was the first time the Curve beat Binghamton at home this year.

How they scored

Bottom 4th: Polanco walked, scored on sacrifice bunt by Rojas Jr. (1-0).

Top 5th: Tovar singled, scored on Harris single (1-1).

Top 7th: Dykstra walked, scored on Lucas single (1-2).

Bottom 8th: Hanson singled, scored on Santos double (2-2); Santos doubled, scored Dickerson single (3-2).