Bullpen falters in nightcap
From Mirror reports
ERIE – The Curve had a chance at a doubleheader sweep and four-game winning streak, but they squandered away the second game Saturday night at Erie.
Joely Rodriguez pitched a gem in the opener with six shutout innings as Altoona won, 2-0. The Curve had a two-run lead in the sixth inning of game two but couldn’t hold on and lost on a walk-off homer by Steven Moya in the eighth, 7-6, as Erie snapped a seven-game losing streak.
Rodriguez pitched his best game of the season, limiting the SeaWolves to two hits in his six scoreless innings. He carried a no-hitter into the fifth before it was broken up with two outs.
Rodriguez (2-4) struck out five and walked just one in lowering his ERA to 4.11.
Alen Hanson provided all the offense the Curve needed in the fifth inning with a two-run single, scoring Keon Broxton and Elias Diaz.
Jhonathan Ramos came on for the seventh and finished off the shutout for his second save, striking out two and giving up one hit.
Erie starter Jeff Ferrell (3-4) took the loss, allowing just two runs despite five walks.
The Curve put themselves in position for the sweep by scoring twice for a 6-4 lead in the sixth inning of game two. Andy Vasquez doubled home Broxton, and Justin Howard scored on a groundout by Drew Maggi.
The lead didn’t last long, though, as Moya singled home two runs in Erie’s half of the sixth to tie it.
The Curve had a golden opportunity to reclaim the lead in the seventh as Hanson walked, stole second and took third on a flyout. Matt Curry came up with the go-ahead run at third and one out, but he couldn’t deliver as he struck out.
Broxton was called out on strikes to end the inning, and when he argued, he was ejected.
Moya, who had smacked a two-run homer in the fourth to give Erie a 4-2 lead, ended the game in dramatic fashion when he drilled a 1-2 pitch from reliever Brandon Mann (1-4) over the wall in right for the walk-off win.
Moya finished 4-for-4 with two homers and six RBIs.
Hanson had pulled the Curve even at 4-4 in the fifth on a two-run homer.
Will Startup (1-1) won in relief for Erie.
Key players: LHP Joely Rodriguez threw six shutout innings for the Curve in the opener; RF Steven Moya went 4-for-4 with two homers and six RBIs for Erie in game two.
Key plays: SS Alen Hanson doubled home both Curve runs in game one; Moya won game two with a walk-off homer in the eighth.
Key stat: The Curve had a chance to run their winning streak to four in game two, but instead Erie rallied and snapped a seven-game losing skid.
How they scored
Top 5th: Diaz singled, Broxton walked, both scored on Hanson double (2-0).
Top 1st: Ngoepe walked, Curry walked, both scored on Broxton single (2-0).
Bottom 2nd: Westlake walked, scored on Moya single (2-1); Moya scored on Sample error (2-2).
Bottom 4th: Cabrera singled, scored on Moya two-run homer (2-4).
Top 5th: Ngoepe singled, scored on Hanson two-run homer (4-4).
Top 6th: Broxton walked, scored on Vasquez double (5-4); Howard reached on Lemon error, scored on Maggi groundout (6-4).
Bottom 6th: Cabrera walked, Green doubled, both scored on Moya single (6-6).
Bottom 8th: Moya solo homer (6-7).