PORTLAND – It was a tough day to manufacture runs, as both the Portland Sea Dogs and Akron Aeros left many runners on base.

But Jerad Head did not need to worry about being stranded on the bases.

Head walloped two solo home runs to give Akron a 3-2 win over Portland on Sunday afternoon before 6,300 at Hadlock Field.

Head’s blast to left-center broke a 1-1 tie in the sixth. His launch over the left-field wall in the eighth provided necessary insurance, as the Sea Dogs’ rally fell short.

“Got ahead in the count both times and was sitting fastball,” Head said. “And I got fastballs.”

Portland got its RBI from Nate Spears (sacrifice fly) and Ryan Khoury (single).

The Sea Dogs left eight runners on base, including five in scoring position. Akron stranded 10.

Down 3-2 in the ninth, Portland’s Juan Apodaca led off with a single. Will Vazquez bunted him over to second.

But Akron closer Bryce Stowell cranked up his 96 mph fastball and struck out pinch-hitter Chih-Hsien Chiang and Spears to end the game.

“Good ballgame. They drove a couple more balls than we did and pitched a little better. That’s all,” Sea Dogs Manager Arnie Beyeler said.

Both of Head’s homers came against the Sea Dogs’ bullpen. Portland starter Kyle Weiland pitched five innings, allowing one run on three hits and three walks. He struck out three.

Weiland’s walks cost him when he issued two passes in the fourth inning and, with two outs, Tim Fedroff singled in a run.

Weiland still lowered his ERA to 3.81.

Portland got its first run in the fifth when Apodaca singled, advanced to third on a walk and Matt Sheely’s sacrifice bunt, and scored on Spears’ fly to left.

Ryne Miller (2-5) relieved Weiland in the sixth. After a strikeout, Head came up and swatted a 90 mph fastball.

Head took Mitch Herold deep in the eighth.

In the bottom of eighth, Yamaico Navarro walked with two outs. He stole second and scored on Khoury’s single to left. But Khoury took too big a turn around first and was picked off.

Akron (34-25) started slowly this season but is 13-5 in June.

“We’re playing a lot better,” Head said. “A different guy each game comes up with the big hit.”

To the Sea Dogs’ dismay, Head was the guy on Sunday.

NOTES: Portland had only five hits Sunday, but the Sea Dogs also drew eight walks, including one by league-leader Spears, who now has 50. … Navarro, who hit two homers on Saturday, stole two bases Sunday. He how has 10 in 13 attempts. … Catcher Luis Exposito got a scheduled day off Sunday. … The Sea Dogs fly out today to begin a three-game series in Altoona, Pa. on Tuesday. The team will then bus to New Britain for three games next weekend. … The Sea Dogs wore unique blue jerseys Sunday as part of Prostate Cancer Awareness Day.

Staff Writer Kevin Thomas can be contacted at 791-6411 or at:

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