A first-inning grand slam by Bryan Reynolds set the tone as the Altoona Curve rolled past the Binghamton Rumble Ponies, 7-2, on Wednesday night at NYSEG Stadium.
The Curve (31-28) hit three homers for the second straight night to clinch a series victory against the Rumble Ponies (34-30).
After a pair of one-out singles and a walk by Binghamton starter Scott Copeland (Loss, 4-1), Reynolds cleared the bases with a grand slam to open a four-run lead the for the Curve in the top of the first.
The blast was the first Double-A homer for Reynolds and the first grand slam for a Curve hitter since Jonathan Schwind hit a game-winning slam at Portland on August 9, 2016.
In the second, Cole Tucker hit an opposite-field solo homer, his first of the season, to open a 5-0 for Altoona.
Binghamton chipped away with run in the second and third innings, the only marks against Mitch Keller (Win, 7-2) on the night. He worked around four walks and four hits over six innings with three strikeouts.
Will Craig added a solo home run in the top of the fifth inning, his eighth of the year and second of the series.
Tucker opened the lead to 7-2 with an RBI single in the eighth.
Curve relievers Yeudy Garcia, Sean Keselica and Geoff Hartlieb each pitched a scoreless inning to close out the game.
Reynolds went 2-for-5 in the game, and he became the third Curve hitter to drive in at least four runs in a single game this year.
Bralin Jackson tallied three hits, including a double, and added a stolen base and a run scored. Jason Martin went 2-for-5 and scored a run.
The Curve have hit six home runs over the first two games of the series in Binghamton.
Keller became the first Pirates minor league pitcher to hit seven wins this season and extended his organization-leading strikeout total to 66.
The Curve and Rumble Ponies wrap up the three-game series on Thursday morning. Left-hander Taylor Hearn (1-4, 3.63) will start for Altoona, opposed by Binghamton right-hander Marcos Molina (1-6, 5.53). First pitch is scheduled for 10:35 a.m. at NYSEG Stadium.
Altoona returns to Peoples Natural Gas Field to begin a three-game series this weekend, highlighted by a spectacular fireworks show on Friday night, an appearance by Curve legend Adam Hyzdu and the Adam Hyzdu Fans’ Choice All-Time Curve Team bobblehead giveaway presented by US Foods on Saturday and a Ritchey’s Dairy Kids’ Club Game with post-game fireworks on Sunday.