PORTLAND, ME- The Altoona Curve capitalized on 10 walks issued by Portland pitching and completed a three-game series sweep with a 10-7 win over the Sea Dogs Thursday afternoon at Hadlock Field in Portland, Maine.
With three wins in hand, Altoona will continue its season-long nine-game road trip in New Hampshire with three games against the Fisher Cats this weekend before finishing the trip in Binghamton next week. The Curve (61-54) improved to a season-high seven games above the .500 mark with the victory. Portland (61-53) lost for the sixth straight time at Hadlock Field.
Sea Dogs' reliever Beau Vaughan surrendered six of the 10 free passes issued by Portland pitchers and took the loss. With Portland leading 6-5 in the seventh, Vaughan (1-3) walked the bases loaded before giving up a base on balls to pinch-hitter Brett Roneberg to even the game at 6-6. In the eighth, he walked both Vic Buttler and Neil Walker ahead of Jason Delaney, who delivered a go-ahead RBI single to give Altoona a 7-6 lead.
Javier Guzman followed Delaney's hit later in the frame with his third RBI of the afternoon -- a sacrifice fly to right -- to extend the Altoona advantage to 8-6 in the eighth. Guzman also knocked in runs on a fourth-inning solo home run and a fifth-inning double. The 25-year old infielder finished the three-game series with seven hits in 11 at-bats posted five RBI.
Chris Hernandez held the Curve lead in the bottom of the eighth with his second consecutive scoreless inning before Altoona padded its lead with a pair of tallies in the top of the ninth on Walker's two-run single. Hernandez (5-1) picked up his second win of the series.
Curve starter Dewon Brazelton lasted only 3 1/3 innings in the game and was tagged with six runs and seven hits. The right-hander walked two and struck out two. After allowing single runs over his first three innings, Brazelton was knocked out of the game during a three-run Portland fourth.
Guzman, Walker, Buttler and Jason Bowers each recorded two hits in the win for the Curve. Guzman had three RBI to lead the way while Delaney and Walker each knocked in a pair.
Portland was led by center fielder Bubba Bell, who went 3-for-4 with a home run and three RBI's to push his combined season total between Class-A Lancaster and Portland to 100.
Altoona will open their series at New Hampshire Friday evening at 7:05 p.m. Right-hander Luis Munoz (10-4, 3.49) is scheduled to take the mound for the Curve against Fisher Cats' righty Kyle Yates (6-7, 4.62).