Brandon Snyder doubled twice in the win
It was a long night in Allentown where at one time they closed all the factories down as the Norfolk Tides played the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs deep into the night. The game went 15 innings and lasted 4 hours and 18 minutes. It was a battle of endurance as relief pitcher after relief pitcher shut the opposing team down. In fact for 9 innings, the 6th through the 15th the Tides were no-hit getting only a walk in the 7th inning to Matt Angle. Likewise the Iron Pigs only managed a hit in the bottom of the 12th inning and 2 walks in the same time period. In 10 innings work the Tides relievers gave up only 2 hits and 2 walks without surrendering a run.
The Tides struck first for 2 runs in the top of the 3rd inning. Blake Davis led off the inning with a double and took third when Matt Angle singled to left. Angle then scored on a ground out by Robert Andino. With Michael Aubrey at the plate Angle stole third and scored on a sacrifice fly by Aubrey. The Tides extended that lead to 3-0 when in the top of the 4th inning Brandon Snyder got a one out double and scored on a single by Blake Davis. In the bottom of the 5th the Iron Pigs struck back. With two outs Brian Bocock struck out swinging but the pitch was a wild pitch by Tim Bascom and Bocock was safe at first. Chris Duffy singled and then Ozzie Chavez took a 1-1 pitch and put it over the right field wall. Bascom then walked a batter before getting Andy Tracy to fly out to end the inning.
These would be the last runs allowed until the top of the 15th inning, nine full innings of scoreless baseball by the bullpens of both teams. In the game within the game, the duel of relief pitchers 5 Norfolk relievers, Armando Gabino, Pat Egan, Alberto Castillo, Denis Sarfate and Jim Hoey held the Iron Pigs scoreless while striking out 13 and walking only 2. The Iron Pigs staff was also impressive. Brian Gordon, Oscar Villareal, Scott Mathieson, Mike Zagurski and Michael Schwimer gave up just 1 hit, that in the 15th inning and 2 walks, also one in the 15th and struck out 9 Tides batters.
The end of this long battle came in the 15th. Brandon Snyder broke the scoreless drought with a leadoff double. Adam Donachie sacrificed Snyder to third on a ground ball out. Paco Figueroa came in to pinch hit for Blake Davis and drew a walk from Schwimer. With runners now on first and third Matt Angle laid down what looked to be a sacrifice bunt. Snyder scored and Angle went to second and Figueroa to third on a throwing error by Schwimer breaking the tie which had existed since the end of the 5th inning. Robert Andino came to the plate and reached on a fielding error by 2nd Baseman Ozzie Chavez and both Angle and Figueroa scored before Schwimer could retire the side. The Iron Pigs went down in order in the bottom of the 15th with Jim Hoey striking out the side.
The winner was Hoey (2-0 2.70 ERA) and the loser Schwimer (2-1 0.87 ERA). The Tides had 6 runs on 8 hits with one error, the costly wild pitch by Bascom in the 5th inning and the Iron Pigs had 3 runs on 7 hits with 2 errors both in the 15th inning which the Tides capitalized on to win the game. The series ended with a split and the Tides travelled to Scranton to play a four game series against the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees.
Chris George struck out 11 but left with no decision on Sunday
The Norfolk Tides win streak and hitting barrage stopped on Saturday as the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs defeated the Tides 6-4 on Saturday and 3-2 on Sunday. On Saturday Chris Tillman made his first start since returning from Baltimore and was hit hard giving up 6 run on 8 hits. Chris was stung by the long ball giving up a solo shot to John Mayberry in the 2nd inning and a two run homer to Ozzie Smith Chavez in the 3rd inning. In the 4th inning Tillman gave up a double and three singles before being pulled in favor of Mike Hinckley. Tillman left the game and relievers Mike Hinckley and Cla Meredith held the Iron Pigs scoreless for the remainder of the game.
Matt Angle has made a lot of money for the Tides as the lead off hitter and leading base stealer
The Tides scored four runs the first coming in the 1st inning when Matt Angle helped manufacture a run by walking, stealing second base and eventually scoring on a sacrifice fly by Michael Aubrey. The Tides came up with nothing more until the 6th inning when Robert Andino singled and stole second and then advanced to third on a wild pitch by Lehigh Valley starter Nate Bump. He scored on a single by Josh Bell. Nolan Reimold singled and Michael Schwimer replaced Nate Bump. Schwimer threw a wild pitch and which allowed Bell and Reimold to advance. Brandon Snyder singled to score both men before Schwimer struck out Adam Donachie swinging to end the inning. The Tides went quietly in the last three innings and the Tides went down to a 6-4 defeat. Chris Tillman (8-5 3.14 ERA) got the loss and Nate Bump (8-4 3.33 ERA) the win. The Tides had 4 runs on 9 hits with 1 error leaving 4 men on base. The Iron Pigs 6 runs on 11 hits and no errors leaving 6 runners stranded.
Sunday evenings game Chris George faced off against Drew Carpenter. The Tides struck first with 2 runs in the top of the 2nd inning when Michel Hernandez singled and stole second base and came home on a Matt Angle single with Angle advancing to second on the throw. Robert Andino singled to drive in Angle and the Tides had a 2-0 lead.
Chris George pitched five scoreless innings before giving up 2 runs in the 6th inning. He allowed 9 hits but struck out 11 Iron Pigs and walked none. Chris gave up the runs on a single by John Mayberry a double by Chris Aguila which scored Mayberry and an RBI single to Neil Sellers. Chris would yield in the 7th to Alberto Castillo who put the Iron Pigs down in order striking out 2 batters.
The game would remain tied until the bottom of the 8th inning. Frank Mata who has not been effective since his return from Baltimore walked Mayberry who stole second base and took third on a wild pitch by Mata. Neil Sellers singled to bring Mayberry home before Mata retired the side on a double play. The Tides went down in order in the 9th and to their second defeat in as many days. Mata (2-2 3.52 ERA) took the loss while reliever Michael Stutes (2-0 3.63 ERA) got the win for the Chiefs with Antonio Bastardo got his 3rd save. The Tides had 2 runs on 9 hits with 1 error and left 10 men on base. The Iron Pigs 3 runs on 10 hits and 1 error with 8 men left on base.
These losses have hurt as the Iron Pigs are one of the weaker teams in the league and the Tides had a chance to gain ground or keep even with their Southern Division rivals. They lead Gwinnett by 1.5 games and trail 2nd place Charlotte by 4. The formidable and seemingly unstoppable Durham Bulls are up by 10 over the Knights and 14 over the Tides. The teams will meet Monday with Tim Bascom (2-5 7.39 ERA) on the hill for the Tides while Joe Savery (1-8 5.01 ERA) starts for Lehigh Valley.
In Baltimore Matt Wieters returned to the lineup from the DL and the Orioles optioned catcher Craig Tatum to the Tides. The move is unpopular with many Orioles fans as Tatum is hitting .271 and has played well behind the plate. Kam Mickolio, Brandon Erbe and Jeff Salazar remain on the Tides Disabled List.
Until tomorrow my friends, peace,