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Altoona's Stolmy Pimentel struggles with control

| Saturday, May 11, 2013, 8:51 p.m.
Christopher Horner
Pirates prospect Stolmy Pimentel delivers during spring training Tuesday, March 5, 2013, at McKechnie Field in Bradenton, Fla.

Stolmy Pimentel has been good all year for Double-A Altoona, but the right-hander struggled with his command Thursday.

Prior to Thursday he had an Eastern League-leading 0.74 ERA, eighth best in minor league baseball, and a .188 batting average against, fourth lowest in the league. His six earned runs on six hits in 4 13 innings Thursday bumped his ERA to 1.99, third in the Eastern League, and his average against to .205.

In his first six starts, Pimentel allowed only three runs in 36 13 innings. He issued five of his 21 walks on the season against Richmond and struck out only three, his fewest in an outing so far this season.

Pimentel also touched 98 mph with his four-seam fastball and reportedly sat between 95 to 97, up a bit from the 94 to 96 range at which he'd been throwing. Garcia believed the increased velocity and decreased command were related.

Odds and ends

Altoona has struggled offensively most of the season. Its team batting average of .226 is worst in the Eastern League, its 121 runs scored are second-fewest, its 255 hits are fewest and the Curve's slugging percentage of .354 is second-worst. ... Third baseman Adalberto Santos leads the team with a .345 average (19 for 55 in 19 games), and Andrew Lambo leads the team in homers and is tied for second-most in the league with seven. ... Despite Pimentel's outing Thursday, the Curve managed 15 hits and won, 9-8. ... Jameson Taillon is 2-4 with a 3.26 ERA in seven starts.

Karen Price is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach her at kprice@tribweb.com or via Twitter @KarenPrice_Trib.

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