PORTLAND, Maine — The Portland Sea Dogs and Altoona Curve played another pair of games Saturday at Hadlock Field, and again the Sea Dogs won both 5-1, 3-2. With the wins, Portland improved to 49-25 on the year and 5-0 against Altoona.
In the first game, left-hander Brian Johnson (6-1) tossed the first complete game of his career and David Chester knocked in three runs, lifting the Sea Dogs to by the Curve.
Johnson worked seven innings on six hits, one run, no walks and fanned four. The complete game was the second straight for Portland.
Portland set the table instantly in the first inning off losing pitcher Joely Rodriguez (3-6). Derrik Gibson led off with a single and Deven Marrero followed with a walk. With one out, Sean Coyle walked to setup a three-run double by Chester.
Altoona their lone run in the second inning on a solo-homer by Willy Garcia over the Maine Monster.
The Sea Dogs added insurance in the fifth inning on Blake Swihart’s two-run single with two outs.
Johnson is now 9-2, 2.36 ERA in 14 combined starts with High-A Salem and Portland. He threw 72 of 105 pitches for strikes.
In the second game, the Curve broke out to a 1-0 lead, thanks to a leadoff homer by Drew Maggi against Robby Scott, but the Sea Dogs bounced right back in the bottom half of the inning.
Deven Marrero reached on an infield single and stole second to spark the one-out rally. Blake Swihart followed and drove home his first run of the night with a single to center, which tied the game at 1-1.
The stalemate would hold over until the third, when Portland plated a pair of unearned runs and took the lead for good against Matt Benedict. Heiker Meneses reached on an error to his counterpart at third, then stole second and moved to third on a groundout by Derrik Gibson.
Deven Marrero put the Dogs in front with a sacrifice fly to right off of the Altoona’s Benedict. Blake Swihart followed with a mammoth home run to right-center, from the left side on a 1-0 pitch, his ninth of the year and upped the lead to 3-1.
Scott worked four innings in his first start in affiliated baseball and gave up just the one run on the homer, he did not walk a batter and struck out three.
Michael Olmsted (3-0) took overand earned the win with two scoreless innings of relief before giving it to Noe Ramirez for the save opportunity.
Ramirez began the seventh and final inning by giving up an infield single to Kelson Brown who then moved to second on a throwing error by Sean Coyle.
With one out, Junior Sosa single to center and on the hop, Derrik Gibson bobbled it and allowed Brown to score and cut the lead to 3-2. Ramirez locked down his seventh save by inducing a 6-3 groundout off the bat of Andy Vasquez.