On a sogy night when it seemed a game wouldn't even be able to be played, the Aeros waited out a 36-minute rain delay and then tip-toed around puddles on the field to post their highest run total of the season in a 16-6 victory over visiting Altoona.
The three-hour and 19-minute game began with Aeros starting pitcher Kelvin De La Cruz spotting the Curve a four-run first inning as he struggled to find the strike zone. In his brief 4 2/3 outing , the left-hander allowed five runs but also struck out eight in the no decision.
Despite facing the early deficit, the Aeros offense rallied to outscore the Curve 12-2 the rest of the way. With the score tied 4-4 after the fifth inning, the Aeros tagged the Curve pitching staff for a four-run fifth and sixth innings to pull away for good.
Curve starter Jeff Locke was chased from the game after just 4 2/3 innings, having given up eight runs on seven hits and six walks.
All but one Akron batter in the starting lineup had at least one hit, with centerfielder Jordan Henry, left fielder Tim Fedroff and designated hitter Matt Lawson each notching three hits a piece.
Still, the biggest offensive display of the night belonged to Aeros third baseman Kyle Bellows, who went 2-for-4 with a three-run home run and six RBI.
Things got so bad for Altoona late in the game that outfielder Jose Hernandez came on to pitch the eighth inning. And while it wasn't so bad that the visitors had turned to a position player to pitch - that can happen occasionally in a minor league game when the score is out of hand.
Nope, what was so incredulous was the fact that Hernandez is listed on Altoona's roster as a right-hander - and yet he was throwing left-handed. And throwing strikes! And struck out the side!
Curve pitchers had only set the Aeos down in order once - in the third inning. And here was a position player throwing with the wrong hand dominating an offense that had already exploded for 16 runs.
Crazy. It was just that kind of night in a game that featured a combined 11 pitchers, 22 runs, 24 hits, 14 walks, three errors, three wild pitches, two batters hit by a pitch and a passed ball.
While De La Cruz escaped with a no-decision, Aeros reliever Kyle Landis was handed the win - and he only pitched 1/3 of an an inning.
A wacky game, no doubt. The Aeros are just glad they came out on the winning side to even their record to 19-19 with the memorable victory over first-place Altoona (18-18).