On the first of four games under MiLB’s Copa de la Diversion initiative, the Erie Piñata’s (14-12) blanked the Congrejos Phantasmas (7-23) on Sunday afternoon at UPMC Park, 5-0. It was the fifth shutout victory of the season and second of the series, as Erie outscored their opponent 16-to-1 in the final three wins.
Starter Matt Manning was dominant in his sixth start of the season, retiring the first nine batters en route to 7.0 scoreless innings, and his third win in 2019. He struck out nine and allowed just three hits, while walking none. Manning has now allowed just three earned runs across 17.2 combined frames against Bowie this year.
Reliever Mark Ecker came on to close the final two innings, retiring six of seven and striking out two. After allowing runs in his first four outings, Ecker has now held the opposition scoreless in his last five appearances.
The Erie bats stayed hot, supplying the staff with more than enough support with a four-run fourth. Daniel Pinero led off with a four-pitch walk and the Jose Azocar drove him in with a double down the third base line. Jake Rogers followed with his third home run of the series and Kade Scivicque blasted his first homer in an Erie uniform to complete the rally.
An unearned run came in the fifth for Erie, as the offense who had not mustered more than four runs in nine straight games entering the series, did it three times in the final three games. Erie is now two games above .500 for the first time since April 9.
After an off day on Monday, Erie will complete the homestand with a three-game series against the Akron RubberDucks. RHP Alex Faedo (2-1, 3.10 ERA) will take the hill versus Tanner Tully (2-2, 4.33 ERA) and the game can be heard on Fox Sports Radio AM 1330 WFNN, SeaWolves.com, the TuneIn app, or also seen on MiLB.TV.
Tuesday, May 7 at UPMC Park:
Kids Eat Free: The first 250 kids, ages 12 and under, receive a voucher for a free Smith’s hot dog, Utz chips and Pepsi fountain drink thanks to 94.7 BOB FM.
Two-Buck Tuesday: Fans 21 and older can enjoy $2 drink specials in the Bud Light Beer Garden through the sixth inning.