RubberDucks fall to Curve 5-3 in series opener
The RubberDucks allowed five runs on just four hits in Friday's loss.
AKRON, OH – A one-out RBI triple from Tyler Naquin in the bottom of the eighth would bring the RubberDucks within one run of Altoona, but the Curve would respond with another run in the top of the ninth to stay ahead and seal a 5-3 victory.
The Altoona Curve (10-9) hit the ground running, posting a pair of runs in in each of the opening two innings. After striking out one to start the game, RHP Gabriel Arias issued back-to-back walks. An early triple from Mel Rojas, Jr. brought two runners home to give Altoona an early 2-0 lead. Soon after, the Curve used the second inning to plate another two off a Gift Ngoepe double with two outs to hold a 4-0 advantage.
The RubberDucks (10-11) would get on the board after Justin Toole opened the bottom of the sixth with a single to
centerfield and advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch by Altoona starter RHP Joely Rodriguez. A single off the bat of Naquin put Toole on third before he would take off for home on a throwing error by Rodriguez, cutting the deficit to 4-1. Naquin would cross home later in the inning on a double play, making it 4-2.
Four different Akron batters recorded a pair of hits against Rodriguez (1-2) who was awarded the win after six innings of work for the Curve. He allowed six hits, two runs - one earned - and struck out four. RHP Ryan Beckman was credited with the save after pitching the final inning, and working his way out of a possible tie game situation with no damage done.
RHP Gabriel Arias (2-2) was handed the loss after four innings on the mound to start the game. Arias allowed two hits, resulting in four earned runs, while walking four and striking out five. He and relief pitcher RHP Duke von Schamann combined for a total of nine strikeouts on the night. Von Schamann came in for relief and pitched a full five innings to close the game. Altoona posted two hits and one run on von Schamann as he fanned four batters and walked none.
Holt left the game in the top of the fourth inning after colliding with the right field wall while making a catch.
The RubberDucks and Altoona Curve continue the three-game series at Canal Park on Saturday at 2:05 p.m. RHP Cody Anderson (1-2, 4.50) is expected to pitch for Akron while RHP A.J. Morris (0-0, 2.53) will make the start for Altoona.
The Akron RubberDucks are the Double-A affiliate of the Cleveland Indians. The 2014 season is its 18th since moving to Canal Park and its first since becoming the RubberDucks. For more information and merchandise featuring the Akron RubberDucks, go to www.AkronRubberDucks.com or call 330-253-5151. The Akron RubberDucks are on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AkronRubberDucks and Twitter at @AkronRubberDuck.