Altoona improves to 39-34
RICHMOND, Va. — The Curve started the season 5-0 before immediately losing eight of their next nine games, and the resilient club has overcome a lot of issues to just sort of hang around .500.
Altoona finally made it back to five games over .500 Tuesday night for the first time since that 5-0 start. The Curve won their third straight and continued their season-long dominance of Richmond with a 5-1 win at The Diamond.
Altoona improved to 39-34 overall and 4-2 in the second half. It finished second in the Western Division in the first half and is third in the second half, one game out of first place.
The Curve did most of their damage in a four-run fifth inning Tuesday, erasing a 1-0 deficit. Robbie Glendinning doubled home the first two runs, and Bligh Madris added a two-run single to make it 4-1.
Brett Pope singled and later scored on a wild pitch in the eighth for Altoona’s other run.
All of that was plenty for Curve starter James Marvel (8-5), who turned in another strong performance. The Eastern League All-Star allowed just one run on four hits over seven innings, striking out eight with one walk.
Richmond’s Caleb Baragar (2-1) gave up four runs on four hits over 4 1/3 innings for the loss. He walked six to go along with six strikeouts.
The Curve have owned the Flying Squirrels this season, with a 9-3 overall record and 7-2 mark at The Diamond. Put another way, Altoona is one game under .500 against all other teams, yet six over against Richmond.
Key player: RHP James Marvel tossed seven strong innings, allowing one run on four hits with eight strikeouts for the Curve.
Key play: Altoona scored four runs in the fifth inning, on a two-run double by SS Robbie Glendinning and two-run single by RF Bligh Madris.
Key stat: The Curve are five games over .500 for the first time since opening the season 5-0.
How they scored
Bottom 2nd: Brusa solo homer (0-1).
Top 5th: Reyes doubled, Sharpe walked, both scored on Glendinning double (2-1); Oliva walked, scored along with Glendinning on Madris single (4-1).
Top 8th: Pope singled, scored on Adon wild pitch (5-1).
Tonight: Altoona at Richmond, 6:35 p.m.
Pitchers: Curve LHP Domingo Robles (1-1, 4.05) vs. Flying Squirrels RHP Brandon Beachy (2-3, 3.98)
Record: 4-2 (second half); 39-34 (overall)