After being blanked by the Columbus Clippers on Tuesday the Norfolk Tides opened their four game series with the Toledo Mud Hens with a come from behind with at 5th 3rd Stadium in Toledo. The Tides got out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the 3rd inning when Matt Angle got a bunt in for a hit and took second base on a throwing error by Toledo Pitcher Ryan Ketchner. He the stole third base on the first pitch by Ketchner to Robert Andino and scored on the next pitch when Andino hit a sacrifice fly to Center Field.
Unfortunately Tides starting pitcher Brad Bergeson making his first appearance for the Tides since being optioned from Baltimore after a dismal performance. Bergeson who had been successful in 2009 until being injured has not been nearly as effective in the big leagues and was sent down earlier in the year for a tune up with the Tides. During that stint he won the one game that he started and returned to the Orioles. Obviously that was what the desire was for Thursday night but Bergeson struggled allowing 3 runs on 5 hits with 2 walks with 3 of the hits and a walk in the 3rd inning using 65 pitches before being pulled out of the game with 2 outs in the 3rd inning.
Now behind by a score of 3-1 the Tides brought in Jim Miller to relieve Bergeson. Miller pitched well going 3.1 innings allowing only 1 hit while striking out 5 Mud Hens. He was relieved in the 7th inning by Mike Hinckley who put the Hens down in order.In the 8th inning the Tides sent 11 men to the plate as the diamond resembled a merry-go-round of Tides players. Paco Figueroa led off the inning with an infield hit and followed by Matt Angle who was walked by reliever Daniel Schlereth who had entered the game at the top of the inning. Robert Andino then singled to load the bases for the Tides. Jeff Salazar reached on a failed force attempt by Mud Hens First Baseman Jeff Frazier which scored Figueroa to make the game a 3-2 game with the bases still loaded. Josh Bell struck swinging bringing Michael Aubrey to the plate. After a called strike Schlereth threw four straight balls to walk Aubrey and score Matt Angle to tie the game. The walk was the signal for a new pitcher and Scott Drucker replaced Schlereth. Nolan Reimold who continues to work his way out of the ooze of his slump doubled on a 1-0 count to Left Field driving in Andino and Salazar and giving the Tides a 5-3 lead. Drucker then intentionally walked Rhyne Hughes to get to weak inning catcher Adam Donachie. Donachie hit a sacrifice fly to Left to score Aubrey before hitting Paco Figueroa with a pitch to reload the bases before getting Matt Angle to ground out to short to end the inning.
Now with a 6-3 lead the Tides brought in Ross Wolf to pitch the 8th inning and Wolf pitched a scoreless 8th allowing only a single by Casper Wells. The Tides had 2 runners on with 2 outs in the top half of the 9th inning but did not add any insurance. This sent the game into the bottom of the 9th where Bobby Dickerson brought in Denis Sarfate allowed a one out walk before striking out Scott Sizemore and Brent Dlugach to end the game.
The Tides had 6 runs on 12 hits and 2 errors leaving 9 men on base. The Mud Hens had 3 runs on 7 hits with 3 errors and left 8 men stranded. The wining pitcher was Mike Hinckley (1-3 7.71 ERA) Denis Sarfate got his 9th save. The Tides and Mud Hens face each other tonight with Chris George on the hill for the Tides facing Rudy Lugo.
In personnel news pitcher Andy Mitchell was placed on the 7 day Disabled List.
Until next time peace,