Altoona lost to the Richmond Flying Squirrels tonight by a score of 8-4, going down early with an 8-2 deficit after six innings. Brett Sinkbeil took the loss, giving up all eight runs, with six earned, in 5.1 innings. Here are the reports from the game.
Marte didn’t do much in his last three at-bats, and aside from extending his hitting streak to 15 games, he had a quiet night. However, he did some good things in his first two at-bats. Marte led off the game with a deep fly out to center field, with the ball being caught just shy of the 405 foot sign in straight away center. The ball would have been a home run to any other part of the park. Marte came back in the third inning displaying some speed. He got on base with an infield single, beating out a ground ball to shortstop. Marte moved to third base on a single to right field by Brad Chalk. He scored after a passed ball, showing some speed by making it home before the catcher could retrieve the ball and get back to the plate. The ball didn’t roll far away from the plate, ending up just short of the grass that surrounds the home plate area.
Latimore had a nice night at the plate, going 3-for-4 with a homer and two RBIs. The homer came in the eighth inning, and was hit down the left field line. It bounced off the top of the wall in the little nook in left, and went over the fence, although it would have been 3-4 rows deep if it had been hit in to the bleachers in left field. Latimore also had a few hard hit balls early in the game. However, in the final at-bat of the game he struck out taking a big cut at a high fastball, leaving the bases loaded with Altoona down by four. He’s definitely got some power, hitting his 32nd double and 15th homer of the year tonight, but he’s also got some plate patience issues.
Alderson had two perfect innings with one strikeout, although his fastball was still closer to the mid-80s. He had success tonight because he was mostly working off of his curveball. That kind of approach, when used over the long term, tends to not work, and it also can be dangerous for the health of his arm.
He didn’t do anything offensively, but he did catch two runners trying to steal second, out of three attempts. The first attempt came in the second inning. Sanchez had a strong throw, but it was to the right of the bag, hitting the runner in mid-slide, and carrying in to center field. Sanchez had another attempt later in the inning, and gunned down the runner with a perfect throw. He caught another runner trying to steal in the ninth inning. His arm is strong, although his accuracy does come in to question. Tonight, however, he was on the mark.
The Pirates Prospects season ending tour will continue tomorrow from Altoona, where Aaron Pribanic will be on the mound. I will be reporting live from the game, with a recap and more player insight afterwards. If you’ve enjoyed the reports so far, show your support to the site by purchasing a copy of the 2011 Prospect Guide, which is now on a season ending clearance sale.
Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.
I had some hope for Alderson when it looked like his FB was getting near (over?) 90, but it looks like he is just going to be another Michael Dubee? Let’s not make another deal with SF anytime soon. Sent them Freddie and J Lopez for nothing.