My first taste of Curve baseball came tonight only a warmer (48 degree) night in Erie. Jeff Locke v. L.J. Ganier. Since this is my first time doing this, I'll give a recap of the game then talk about specific players that were either impressive or are prospects.
The Cruve just couldn't find a clutch hit tonight, managing 3 hits in a 2-1 loss tonight in Erie. The Curve jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the 2nd on a first pitch bomb by Eric Fryer. Hitting was minimal with a load of fly outs and weak ground balls making up a majority of the offense tonight.To give you an idea of the game, both teams combined to go 0-16 with runners in scoring position.
Jeff Locke (SP): 4.2 innings, 4 K, BB, 2 R, 0 ER. Locke came out firing, the radar gun was down in the ball park but he was rocketing some pitches in there. His curve and change both looked very good but the Seawolves did rope a few of his fastballs up the middle. Both of Locke's runs came in the fifth due to a passed ball and a wild pitch. Though he got the loss, Locke looked very smooth out on the mound.
Starling Marte (CF): 0-3, 3 K's. Marte looked very poor in my first game seeing him. He never seemed to want to swing the bat, checking his swing on just about every pitch he saw. He struck out on a bad call his second at bat but besides that, he really did not do that much. He managed to get on base once, being hit in the left wrist with a fastball. He seemed alright and trotted down to 1B. His defense was fine, made a catch or two but really, not much was hit at him.
Tony Sanchez (C): 0-4. Sanchez smoked some balls today, however, they were right at people. In the third, he cranked a pitch to the warning track and narrowly missed a 3-run homer. Behind the plate, it was a bit of an odd night. he mishandled at least 1 ball and also threw a ball about 10 feet over 1B Miles Druham's head. On the plus side, Sanchez blocked just about every other slider and curve Locke threw. Sanchez also gunned a runner in the 6th. Overall, Sanchez looked a bit rusty but seemed to be bouncing around the dugout and was all smiles before the game.
Brock Holt (SS): I did not know a lot about Holt coming into the game but my first impression of him... he can fly. I was surprised when Holt lead off as I was sure Marte would do the honors. Holt showed a good eye at the plate, drawing 2 walks and also smacked a double. Both times he was walked he stole second. I had heard Marte was fast but didn't get to see his speed tonight but I will say, Holt has blistering speed for those who have not seen him. He made the plays on defense and seemed to be the only player awake at the plate/on the bases tonight.
The Curve seem like a very young team. Tim Alderson made an appearance in relief, recording 2 strikeouts in 1.1 inning of work. His delivery is still very jerky but his breaking ball had an incredible break to it. His fastball was rocketing in there but again, I have no numbers as to how hard he was throwing. A sidearmer also pitched in relief by the name of Boleska. Quincy Latimore had some strong swings but never got the barrel on the bat. Eric Fryer sat in at DH and crushed one of the farthest homeruns I've seen at Jerry Uht Park.
My summary, after seeing one game of Altoona, they are very young. Tony Sanchez looks like he still may be getting the rust off from being out for so long. He did look thin but has a stocky build to him. His defense was spectacular at times, shaky at others. Marte really didn't show me much so I'll have to see him again before I can make a call. Locke looks like he is going to be dominant. Some freak poor plays knocked him out early but, early in the season, I doubt we're going to see a complete game. Anyway, that is my scoop. Sorry if this seemed a bit disorganized, I'm not the greatest at writing reports.