Pittsburgh Pirates Prospects: Strong Sean Sullivan Start, Cal Mitchell HR & More
By Marty Leap
9th inning problems sink Double-A Altoona
Entering the 9th inning on Thursday evening the Altoona Curve and Akron RubberDucks were tied at 2. The Curve bullpen would unfortunately falter in the 9th inning, allowing a pair of runs leading to a 4-2 loss. With the loss, the Curve fell to 13-15 on the season.
Lefty Tyler Samaniego has pitched well for Altoona this season. However, he allowed 2 runs on four hits in the 9th inning on Thursday leading to the loss. The most gutwrenching part is that the runs came via three straight two-out hits.
In the bottom of the 9th inning the Curve looked primed to at least tie the game. Andres Alvarez was hit by a pitch to start the inning, Connor Scott singled, and the runners were then bunted over to put two runners in scoring position with just one out. Following the sacrifice bunt, Matthew Fraizer struck out and Liover Peguero grounded out to end the inning.
Sean Sullivan started for Altoona and continued to pitch well. In 6 innings pitched, Sullivan allowed 2 runs on seven hits, no walks, and three strikeouts. In 21.2 innings pitched this season Sullivan now owns a 2.08 ERA and an 8:18 BB:K ratio. Cam Junker then followed Sullivan with 2 scoreless innings of his own, lowering his ERA to 2.38.
Even though he grounded out to end the game, Peguero also hit his 2nd home run of the season. Matt Gorski was 1-for-4, Alvarez was 1-for-3, and Scott's 9th inning hit was one of a pair on the night for him. The only other Curve base runners came on a pair of Lolo Sanchez walks and a Claudio Finol walk.