Bowie, Md. - The Altoona Curve defeated the Bowie Baysox 6-5 in the 2014 season finale on Monday afternoon at Prince George's Stadium. The Curve shelled out five extra-base hits of their ten total hits in the victory and finished the season with a 61-81 record.
Bowie got off to a quick start offensively against Altoona starter Joely Rodriguez. Baysox leadoff man Mike Yastrzemski reached on an infield single and advanced to second on a groundout. With two away, Chris Marrero gave Bowie the first run of the game with a single to right that scored Yastrzemski.
After trailing by a run, the Curve took the lead in the third. Matt Curry led off the inning with a single up the middle and Ralph Henriquez followed by dribbling a ball to the third baseman Sharlon Schoop, but an errant throw put two men in scoring position. Gift Ngoepe made the Baysox pay by shooting a double to the gap in right which give Altoona a 2-1 lead. Two batters later, Ngoepe scored on an RBI single from Dan Gamache.
The Baysox made it a one-run game in the third. After Sammie Starr hit a leadoff single, he later scored on a two-out single from K.D. Kang.
Yastrzemski continued to be a thorn in the side of the Curve in the fifth. After Zane Chavez led off the fifth with a single, he scored when Yastrzemski roped a triple to right-center. The triple tied the game at three and the Baysox broke the tie when Garabez Rosa plated Yastrzemski with a single up the middle with the Curve infield drawn in.
In the sixth, Bowie padded their lead with another run. Sharlon Schoop clubbed his third home run of the season over both sets of walls in left to make it a 5-3 game.
Altoona continued to battle in the seventh and tied the game. Henriquez led off the inning with a double that fell a few feet shy of clearing the wall. Ngoepe followed with his third RBI of the game by tripling down the right field line. Drew Maggi then struckout and was ejected from the game following his called third strike. The ejection didn't stop the Curve rally, though. Gamache reached on a fielder's choice and ran to second while Ngoepe was caught in a rundown. With a runner in scoring position, Keon Broxton tallied his second hit of the day, a double to left which scored Gamache.
Andy Vasquez provided the final run for the Curve in the eighth inning. The lefty led off the inning with a solo blast to right which gave Altoona a 6-5 lead. The outfielder finished the season with 11 home runs, a new career-high.
Rodriguez (6-11) earned the win for Altoona after he matched a career-high with seven innings pitched. The southpaw surrendered five runs on nine hits in his last outing of the season and didn't walk any batters while striking out three. Julio DePaula (1-5) suffered the loss and Kenn Kasparek notched his 13th save of the season by working a perfect ninth to conclude the 16th season of Altoona Curve baseball.
Broxton was hitless in his first two at bats but singled in the fifth to finish his season with a 19-game on-base streak. Alen Hanson finished the season with a team-best 27-game on-base streak which was still in progress before his season was concluded with a DL stint that began on August 25. Should either of the two players return the Eastern League in 2014, those streaks will remain active.
The Curve will return to action at Peoples Natural Gas Field on April 16, 2015 against the Akron RubberDucks. Season tickets are on sale now with special incentives including the Never Waste a Ticket program, early admission to all home games, and more. To purchase season tickets or for additional information, call 877.99.CURVE, visit AltoonaCurve.com, or stop by the front office at Peoples Natural Gas Field.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.