Curve at least get to play 9 in a row
From Mirror reports
AKRON — If there was a positive to take from Wednesday’s Curve loss against Akron, it was that for the first time in five games, Altoona played nine straight innings of uninterrupted baseball.
The rest of the Curve’s 5-1 loss to the RubberDucks at Canal Park was all bad news as Akron increased its Western Division lead to six games, and Harrisburg gained ground on Altoona for the final playoff spot with its win over Portland.
The one run scored was the first time in the last nine games that the Curve were held to fewer than three runs.
Tuesday night’s game against Akron was suspended in the bottom of the eighth with the Curve up 8-2. The game resumed before Wednesday’s regularly-scheduled game. Altoona picked up two more runs in the top of the ninth from a Logan Hill two-run home run that scored Bryan Reynolds en route to a 10-2 victory.
In the 5-1 loss, Cam Vieaux had his worst performance as a member of the Curve, giving up five runs, a Double-A career-high for him, in just 4 ? innings. Vieaux needed 94 pitches in his short start to strike out a pair of batters while walking three and allowing seven hits. The two strikeouts were the fewest in Vieaux’s nine starts for Altoona and the least he’s thrown since 12 starts ago as a member of high-A Bradenton.
The Curve were nearly kept off the scoreboard by Akron’s Triston McKenzie, who allowed just a single run in 5 ? inning. The three-hit performance McKenzie delivered was an encore of the last time the right-hander faced Altoona when he held the Curve to just one hit in over six innings of work earlier this month.
Not even Will Craig could muster much opposition to Akron pitching as the hot-hitting first baseman struck out three times, a day removed from a three RBI game.
Bret Helton pitched 2 ? innings of scoreless relief for Altoona, the first scoreless outing for the righty in eight appearances. Matt Eckelman finished the game with his second-straight relief effort without allowing a run.
Jordan Milbrath and Cole Sulser combined for 3? innings out of the Akron bullpen to hold the Curve offense to just two additional hits and prevent a late surge and series sweep by Altoona.
Altoona returns home for a four-game series against a below .500 Binghamton squad before three crucial games against Harrisburg that will go a long way in determining the playoff picture.
Key player: Akron CF Tyler Krieger was 2-for-4 with a double and 2 RBIs.
Key play: Curve 2B Logan Ratledge stole his first base of the season.
Key stat: The Curve lead Harrisburg by 2.5 games for the final playoff spot in the Western Division.
How they scored
Bottom 2nd: Paulino walked, Haggerty singled, both scored on Krieger double (0-2).
Bottom 5th: Krieger and Sever singled, both scored on Bradley double (0-4); Bradley scored on Castro double (0-5).
Top 6th: Reynolds doubled, scored on Hill single (5-1).