BAYSOX BEAT THE CURVE 3-2. Capture First Place in the Western Division
Altoona,Pa.- After breaking out the sticks in a 7-3 win on Monday night, The Baltimore Orioles AA affiliate Bowie Baysox, turned to another tried and true baseball formula for success, by out pitching their way to a 3- 2 victory over the 2010 Eastern Division Champions; Altoona Curve.(Pittsburgh Pirates)
Baysox manager Gary Kendell, sent opening day starter Chorey Spoone to the mound, who was returning to the team after making eight starts at AAA Norfolk. The Curve would counter with Jared Hughes. Altoona's 6'-7" righthander, looked like most young freakishly tall power pitcher, struggling with his mechanics.
Bowie jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the first inning. After being issued back-to-back walks to the first two batters in Xavier Avery and Greg Miclat, Robbie Widalansky popped out to second baseman Brock Holt. Caleb Joeseph, promptly scorched a line drive back through the box, scoring The speedy Avery from second. Hughes would regain his composure, striking out catcher Steve Lerud, and inducing short stop Pedro Florimond to fly out to left. Both Hughes and Spoone would struggle with their command, but wiggle out of jams, with timely strikeouts and double plays.
In the top of the third, with Bowie holding a 1-0 lead, the Sox would tack on another run. Again, Hughes would struggle with his control and hit the first two batters of the inning in Miclat and Widlansky. Miclat would go on to steal third base, and then score when Caleb Joeseph grounded in to a double play.
Chorey Spoone was having problems of his own commanding the fastball. In the first two innings, he walked two batters and hit two batters, but was still able to slither out of trouble. However,the bottom of the third inning came back to bite him. The first batter, Starling Marte smoked the first pitch down the third base line. Brandon Waring made an outstanding diving snare to his left, throwing across the diamond on one knee, and beating the hustling Marte by a step. Curve's left fielder, Quincy Lattimore was walked and stole second. Clean up hitter Jordy Mercer flew out to right and it looked like the Baysox righthander may pull off another Houdini and escape unscathed. However, a botched, two out pick off play at second by the pitcher, put Lattimore on third. Third basemen Jeremy Farrell drove in Lattimore with a single in the right center field gap. With Bowie holding a 2-1 lead, Spoone then retired Tony Sanchez with a lazy fly to center. Chory seemed to have more command of his curve ball, than his heater, and began using it more as the game progressed. He would settle down, and looked better as the game wore on. He finished after 5 2/3 innings, giving up that only run.
Southpaw Pedro Viola came in relief of Spoone. After a flawless sixth inning, the tall lefthander was betrayed by his defense. In the bottom of the seventh, Shelby Ford led off with a single, then took second after a passed ball. Brad Chalk laid down a sacrifice bunt, moving Ford to third. A sacrifice fly to center, off the bat of Brock Holt, would score Ford, and tie the game at two. Reliever Dan Kliene would come into finish off the inning.
The score would remain deadlocked at two, until the top of the ninth, when the Baysox would take the lead for good. With Altoona's Pitcher Michael Dubee on the bump, Brandon Waring hit a leadoff single to left. Curve's second basemen Brock Holt would commit an error on a sac bunt by Billy Rowell, putting runners on first and second. Cookie Rojas came in to pinch run for Waring. Avery would push the runners to second and third with a beautifully executed bunt. After loading the bases with a walk to Miclat, The Sox would lay down yet another bunt from Widlansky, scoring Rojas, and culminating with Rowell being thrown out a third to end the inning.
Gary Kendall, would turn to closer Jorge Diaz to finish off the Curve. After walking leadoff hitter, Brad Chalk on four pitches and giving up a sacrifice bunt to Brock Holt. The hard throwing righthander struck out Starling Marte and Quincy Lattimore to end the game.
With the first two victories in the four game set, Bowie has jumped over Altoona to claim first place in the Western Division, by a game and a half. The series resumes tomorrow at 10;30 A.M, when the Altoona Curve will send Mike Colla to the mound to face Steve Johnson, who is the son of MASN Orioles anaylist Dave Johnson .
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