Akron RubberDucks hang on to down Altoona Curve 6-4

Record-Courier staff report Published:

AKRON -- A two-run second inning, followed by another third-inning run, gave the Akron RubberDucks an early lead and they hung on to defeat the Altoona Curve 6-4 on Sunday afternoon at Canal Park.

Akron's Bryson Myles singled to right field with no outs in the bottom of the second to send Joe Wendle, who had reached on a walk, to third. An RBI single from Jordan Smith brought Wendle home before Ronny Rodriguez clubbed a sacrifice fly to centerfield, allowing Myles to score and put Akron ahead 2-0. Myles appeared to not be tagging up on the play, fooling Altoona centerfielder Mel Rojas, Jr., who was caught off-guard by his sudden sprint home for the run.

The Ducks' Francisco Lindor and Giovanny Urshela led off the third inning with consecutive doubles, plating another run for a 3-0 advantage.

In the next frame, Akron starter Joe Colon walked Justin Howard, setting him up to score a run on a double by Elias Diaz. Diaz later scored in the inning, putting the Curve within one run of Akron at 3-2.

With the RubberDucks looking for an insurance run in the bottom of the fifth, an Altoona error by shortstop Alen Hanson helped the cause by allowing Urshela to score after reaching base on his second double of the game. Bryan LaHair later scored on an RBI single by Tony Walters as the RubberDucks led 5-2 heading into the sixth inning.

A solo homer from Altoona's Gift Ngoepe put up a run for the Curve in the eighth.

Akron answered in the bottom of the inning when Tyler Naquin reached on an error and eventually scored after Urshela hit his third double of the game.

Altoona posted another run in the top of the ninth, but Akron reliever Tyler Sturdevant struck out two to end the game.

Colon (1-2) picked up the win after six innings of work (2 ER, 4 BB).

Colon tied his season high for strikeouts this season with five while allowing three hits, his fewest in a game so far this year.

Sturdevant walked away with his first save since 2011 after pitching the final 11⁄3 innings, where the Curve registered two hits and one earned run.

Altoona starter Adrian Sampson (3-2) took the loss (12⁄3 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB). The Curve sent Matt Benedict to the mound in the bottom of the second as he went on to pitch 21⁄3 innings in which Akron managed five hits and three runs, two earned.

In what was the longest nine-inning game of the 2014 season so far at three hours and six minutes, the RubberDucks posted 11 hits, falling one hit shy of tying their season record for most hits in a game. Urshela, the Indians' Minor League Player of the Week, posted a 3-for-5 effort at the plate with two RBI. Despite the strong offense, Akron stranded 12 runners on base, the most in any game this season.

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