Abreu Sparkles as Thunder Rally for 4-2 Win
ALTOONA, PA - Albert Abreu delivered seven innings and Mandy Alvarez broke a 2-2 tie with an RBI double in the eighth inning to push the Thunder to a 4-2 win over the Altoona Curve on Tuesday night at Peoples Natural Gas Field.
With the game tied at two, the Thunder offense rallied with a single from Matt Lipka and a sacrifice bunt from Hoy Jun Park to put the go-ahead run in scoring position. After Chris Gittens grounded out, Alvarez came through with a double down the left field line to take a 3-2 lead. It marked the second straight night that Alvarez put the Thunder ahead in the late innings after his RBI double on Monday night helped secure a 4-3 win. Ben Ruta followed Alvarez with a key insurance run; as he singled him home to extend the lead.
Daniel Alvarez maneuvered into and out of trouble in both the eighth and ninth innings to earn his 12th save of the season. Alvarez allowed a season-high five hits in his two innings of relief working out of a bases loaded, no out, jam in the eighth, and stranding two aboard in the ninth after they stood there with one out.
Abreu completed seven innings for the second time this season despite allowing single runs in each of his first two frames on the mound. The 23-year-old right-hander needed just 66 pitches to get through five innings and struck out seven to that point. Altoona threatened with back-to-back singles to start the sixth inning, but, Abreu got a double play and another groundout to short-circuit the inning. In all, Abreu allowed eight hits, two runs, walked one and struck out seven on 93 pitches.
Isiah Gilliam recorded his first multi-hit game of the season and his hit his first Double-A homer in Tuesday's win. His massive solo blast in the fourth inning tied the game at two and he was stranded at second in the ninth inning after he singled to start the frame.
Matt Lipka continued his torrid stretch at the plate with a 1-for-3 day, with a run scored and a walk. In his last seven games, he is 12-for-25 (.480) and is the reigning Eastern League Player of the Week.
Your Thunder go for the sweep of the Curve on Wednesday night at 6:30pm. RHP Adonis Rosa (3-1, 4.19) will start for the Thunder, LHP Brandon Waddell (2-1, 1.44) will go for Altoona. Pre-game coverage begins at 6:15pm on 920 AM The Jersey and online www.TrentonThunder.com/Broadcast.
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