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Aeros lose third straight, falling to Thunder 5-3

Starting pitching woes continue on a day not really about baseball

Aeros lose third straight, falling to Thunder 5-3
April 15, 2013
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TRENTON, NJ -- The Akron Aeros lost the series opener to the Trenton Thunder 5-3 at Arm & Hammer Park Monday night, giving the team their third straight loss. The Aeros are now 3-8 on the season and have lost five out of their last six games.

Baseball took a backseat Monday after the tragic events in Boston, though. Donate blood. Donate money. Donate time. Keep the victims and heroes in your thoughts and prayers. Do whatever you want, but some things are more important than baseball.

Well, with that interlude over, let's get on with the game. As Buster Olney tweeted earlier, "The role for sports now is to provide temporary distraction for those facing heartbreak." I agree wholeheartedly.

Aeros starting pitcher Danny Salazar managed to make it through five innings with five strikeouts, though the Trenton hitters knocked him around. The right-hander allowed seven hits and four runs, pushing his ERA up to 6.39.

Salazar's start continues a poor stretch of starting pitching for the Aeros, with Salazar and company allowing 27 runs in their last 29.0 innings. Akron hitters have struggled a little bit so far this season, but it hardly matters with the starting pitching routinely putting games out of reach.

Center fielder Tyler Holt supplied the Aeros with their only extra base hit of the day, driving in two runs with a double in the second inning. Holt's double put Akron ahead 2-0, the only time they were ahead.

The center fielder has gotten off to a particularly slow start in 2013, coming into Monday with a .139/.244/.139 line and 10 strikeouts in 41 plate appearances. Holt only had the one hit -- finishing the night 1-for-5, but the double is good to see.

Following Holt putting the team ahead, Salazar immediately gave up the lead. The right-hander struck out the first two batters of the inning before allowing a double to third baseman Rob Segedin and a home run to left fielder Neil Medchill.

Salazar then gave up a run in the third and fourth inning, allowing Trenton to stay ahead for good.

Akron added a run in the fourth inning on an RBI single from recent addition Jeremy Lucas. Lucas is getting a chance in Double-A thanks to the recent rash of catcher injuries throughout the system, though he may start sharing time with catcher Chris Wallace.

Wallace was acquired Monday morning from the Houston Astros in return for Aeros left-hander Eric Berger. The Cleveland organization will miss Berger's legendary mustache, but his chances of making it to the major leagues are much better in Houston.

Right-hander Kyle Landis relieved Salazar, making it through two innings while allowing one run. Fellow right-hander Bryce Stowell -- making his first appearance since coming off of the disabled list -- took over from Landis in the eighth inning.

Stowell put the Thunder down 1-2-3, with two swinging strikeouts and an infield popup. If Stowell can find a way to finally stay healthy, this is the level of dominance he is capable of achieving.

The Aeros will play game two of their series with the Thunder Tuesday, sending left-hander T.J. House (0-1, 5.06 ERA, 3.29 FIP) to face right-hander Zak Nuding (0-1, 0.93 ERA, 4.13 FIP).

Miscellaneous

Attendance: 3,959... Time of Game: 2:38... Game time temperature: 54 degrees...

If you want to follow Jim on Twitter, he’s @JimPiascik. If you want to e-mail him, you can do so at jpiasci1@gmail.com. If you want to read his Master's thesis on college athletes and Twitter, you can do so here.

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