The Norfolk Tides concluded an otherwise dismal road trip with a 2-1 11 inning victory over the Indianapolis Indians on Thursday night. The key to the Tides victory was pitching as Earl Weaver said “the only thing that matters is what happens on the little hump out in the middle of the field.” Starter Rick Vanden Hurk pitched 8 outstanding innings allowing 1 ruin on 3 hits, the run coming on the only hits he allowed in the game, successive singles to Pedro Ciriaco, Brian Friday and Kevin Melillo. With the exception of a walk to Brian Friday in the bottom of the 6th inning he allowed no other base runners. He threw 103 pitches with 73 being strikes, an amazing strike to pitch ratio in anyone’s book.
Vanden Hurk came out of the game in the 9th and relievers Alberto Castillo, Frank Mata and Denis Sarfate all pitched an inning of scoreless relief allowing no hits with Castillo and Sarfate each walking a batter. Mata (3-2 3.07 ERA) got the win and Sarfate (2-1 S15 3.07) got his 15th save of the year.
The Tides got 9 hits but manages just the two runs but that was all that they needed to secure the win. In the top of the 6th inning Brandon Snyder doubled and moved to 3rd on a sacrifice bunt by Scott Moore and scored on a Paco Figueroa single.
The score remained tied until the 11th inning with neither team able to connect the dots to score a run. In the one out in the top of the 11th Paco Figueroa doubled on a pop up that was missed by Second Baseman Brian Friday. He advanced to third base on a ground ball out to first base by Jeff Salazar and with Robert Andino at the plate scored on a wild pitch by Indians’ reliever Jean Machi. The Indians were then sent down by Denis Sarfate to end the game. The Tides had 2 runs on 9 hits with no errors, the Indians 1 run on 3 hits with 2 errors. Machi (5-4 4.17 ERA) took the loss for the Tribe.
The Tides return home to Harbor Park tonight for Navy Night against the Charlotte Knights with Troy Patton back on the hill for the Tides facing Brandon Hynick (1-2 7.03 ERA). On the roster the Chris George who injured his elbow against the Indians on Tuesday was placed on the 7 Day DL.
In other news the Tides and Orioles announced a four year extension of their Player Development Agreement/ Affiliation that will go through the 2014 season. Double A Bowie and Advanced Single A Frederick announced similar deals.
See you at the Church of Baseball, Harbor Park Parish.