Home run from Nunez raises the curve | News, Sports, Jobs

In a rocking game that featured five lead changes, Malcom Nunez delivered a home run in the ninth to cap Altoona’s 8-5 victory over the Harrisburg Senators.

Jared Triolo and Matt Fraizer set the tone early for Altoona, throwing solo homers in the first and second innings, respectively, against Harrisburg starter Jake Irvin.

Curve starter Cristofer Melendez pitched two scoreless innings before giving way to Carmen Mlodzinski, who was poorly received in third.

Nationals centerpiece Juan Soto trade Robert Hassell led Harrisburg’s first inning with a groundout. The Senators then took the lead with a two-out trade, punctuated by an RBI single from Israel Pineda that put Harrisburg in the lead, 3-2.

The Curve responded late in the round. With the bases loaded and no one out, Aaron Shackelford’s pop fly dove into shallow left field untouched, scoring two goals. Although Malcom Nunez was sent off trying to move from first to third, Altoona was back in front, 4-3.

Pineda slapped a second RBI single in the fifth to tie the score at four-all, and Jackson Cluff’s RBI double in the sixth put Harrisburg ahead.

Altoona wide receiver Endy Rodriguez, recently promoted from High-A Greensboro, tied the game yet again with a left single in the bottom of the seventh.

The Senators charged in the top of the ninth, only for Colin Selby to get by with a pop-up and strikeout.

Unlike Harrisburg, Altoona wouldn’t waste their shot late in the round. With two over and two over, designated hitter Malcom Nunez homered deep into the night to send the home crowd of 3,811 happy and Curve players exiting the dugout in jubilation.

“I was just trying to see the ball and give it a good swing” he said through a translator. “As soon as I hit him, I knew I was hitting him good.”

Nunez headlined the Jose Quintana trade earlier this month and paid immediate dividends. The burly third baseman reached base 14 times in eight games with Altoona. Tonight he recorded his first signing moment in the Pirates organization.

Curve manager Kieran Mattison said Nunez had been a hit with the rest of the squad.

“Guys love it” he said. “He fits very well in our clubhouse. It’s good to see him doing the job there.


Mattison said the curve is “creating momentum” hot on the heels of back-to-back wins.

“I remember last year when things started rolling for us. You get those starts, the guys start to find a way to win, and now we expect to win, instead of hoping to win. he said.

PNG Field Festivities

The Curve Celebrated “Cambria County Night” Thursday, benefiting the John B. Guner Community Leadership Initiative. Indie band Silver Linings performed on the Budweiser Party Deck before the game.

Mountain towns

Altoona reprized her role as “Mountain Towns” again paying homage to an independent league team that played in the area in the 19th century.

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