Opening Day 2015

Hard-throwing righty Tyler Glasnow is Pittsburgh's top prospect entering 2015. (Cliff Welch / MiLB.com)
Hard-throwing righty Tyler Glasnow is Pittsburgh’s top prospect entering 2015. (Cliff Welch / MiLB.com)

by TREY WILSON

Opening Day is finally here! The Curve open up the 2015 season tonight on the road against the Harrisburg Senators.

A little over a month ago, we took a stab at guessing the 2015 Curve lineup. We weren’t too far off!

Here is how the Curve will look to start the season:

Possible Opening Day lineup:

2B Max Moroff
CF Keon Broxton
1B Josh Bell
LF Willy Garcia
RF Stetson Allie
3B Eric Wood
C Sebastian Valle
SS Gift Ngoepe

Position player reserves:
Catcher Jacob Stallings, infielders Dan Gamache and Edward Salcedo, and outfielders Jonathan Schwind and Junior Sosa. 

Pitching Rotation:
RHP Angel Sanchez
RHP Jason Creasy
RHP Tyler Glasnow
RHP Chad Kuhl
LHP Zack Dodson

Bullpen:
Right-handers Yhonathan Barrios, Matt Benedict, John Kuchno, Jhondaniel Medina, and Tyler Sample, as well as lefties Tom Harlan and Josh Smith. 

This year’s Curve roster is headlined by the top prospect in the Pittsburgh Pirates organization, Tyler Glasnow. The hard-throwing right-hander has dominated at the lower levels through his first three professional seasons, but the Double-A Eastern League will be his toughest test yet.

Stetson Allie will move from first base to the outfield this season (Mark Olson / MiLB)
Stetson Allie will move from first base to the outfield this season (Mark Olson / MiLB)

Ten players on the Opening Day roster made stops in Curve, PA last season. Outfielder Willy Garcia returns after setting the team’s single-season outfield assists record last year. Josh Bell and Stetson Allie will both tackle new positions. After starting his career as a pitcher and then moving to first base, Allie will patrol the corner outfield positions this year. After joining the Curve late last season, Bell will flip from an outfielder to a first baseman this year.

Baseball America Top 30 Pittsburgh Prospects
1. Tyler Glasnow
4. Josh Bell
12. Willy Garcia
21. Stetson Allie
28. Chad Kuhl

The Curve may have one of the most powerful outfield lineups in the minors with Garcia, Allie and Broxton, who combined for 54 home runs last year.

Keon Broxton (53) returns to Altoona after hitting a career-best .275 with q5 home runs in 2014 (Kevin Pataky/MiLB.com)
Keon Broxton (53) returns to Altoona after hitting a career-best .275 with q5 home runs in 2014 (Kevin Pataky/MiLB.com)

The roster also includes two brand new faces in the Pittsburgh organization. Catcher Sebastian Valle spent the last eight seasons in the Philadelphia system and played with Triple-A Lehigh Valley and Double-A Reading last season. Infielder Edward Salcedo climbed through the Atlanta system for the last five years, reaching as high as Triple-A Gwinnett in 2014 before he was traded to Pittsburgh this February.

Gift Ngoepe also returns for his third season with the Curve, while newcomer Eric Wood will man third base to begin the season.

This roster has brought some optimistic chatter to Curve, PA. And so far, it seems like a fun group of guys. Here is a video from WTAJ featuring Matt Benedict asking his teammates some tough questions. – http://www.wearecentralpa.com/story/d/story/curve-ball-questions/40180/j0W8dMNnaEKdg_z5eHkJYg

Here are some fun photos from Curve Media Day earlier this week:

Curve baseball kicks off tonight! Be sure to tune in for live coverage of the road games in Harrisburg and Richmond locally on ESPN Radio 1430 WVAM, and worldwide at AltoonaCurve.com or on the TuneIn Radio app. The Curve return to PNG Field next Thursday to face the Akron RubberDucks.


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