Two poor innings sink Double-A Altoona
Things started well for the Double-A Altoona Curve in their Tuesday morning matchup with the Reading Fightin Phils. The Curve jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the 11 AM first pitch, however, allowing 6 runs in the 4th inning and 4 in the 7th inning sunk the Curve in an 11-5 loss. With the loss, the Curve are now 7-8 on the season.
The Curve quickly struck to take the lead. With one out in the top of the 1st inning Liover Peguero walked and Domingo Leyba doubled. With two outs in the inning Mason Martin hit a double, making the score 2-0 Altoona.
Kyle Nicolas started for the Curve and fired 3 scoreless innings to start the game. Nicolas ran into trouble in the 4th inning, but it was not completely on him. With two outs in the inning shortstop Andres Alvarez committed a throwing error to keep the inning alive. Six Reading hits, including a home run, followed.
Then in the 5th inning Nicolas was hurt by a passed ball by Dylan Shockley. When the dust settled, Nicolas allowed 7 uneared runs in 4.2 innings pitched. He did allow nine hits and a pair of home runs, but six of those hits and both home runs came in an inning that should have already been over. Nicolas did not walk a batter, he struck out six, threw 65 of 89 pitches for strikes, and lowered his ERA on the season to 4.34.
Matt Eckelman got the final out of the 5th inning and then fired a 1-2-3 6th inning. Retiring all four batters he faced, Eckelman also recorded three strikeouts. Braedan Ogle allowed 4 runs on a hit, which was a home run, two walks and a wild pitch in the 7th inning. Juan Minaya then picked up a strikeout in a scoreless 8th inning.
Leyba started at third base and went 2-for-4 with his double, a run scored, and two RBI. He now owns a .964 OPS this season. Fabricio Macias was 1-for-3 with a walk and two RBI, and Matt Fraizer was 1-for-3 with a walk and run scored.