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Tides Lose in Sunday Afternoon Slugfest 8-6

“The key to winning baseball games is pitching, fundamentals, and three run homers.” Earl Weaver

Getting his swing back. Nolan Reimold hammers a deep fly ball on Sunday

The Norfolk Tides lost their 5th straight falling to the Buffalo Bisons in a Sunday afternoon slugfest in which for the third time in three games they collected what should have been enough hits and runs to win. In fact today of the 8 runs scored by the Bisons 3 were unearned coming as the result of poor fielding and throwing by Tides infielders in particular a top of the 8th inning error where shortstop Robert Andino ran past what would have been an easy double play ball off the bat of former Norfolk Tides infielder Justin Turner that scored two runs at a point that the Tides were ahead in the game.  The runs gave the Bisons a lead that they would not relinquish and seal the fate of the Tides on this blistering hot Sunday afternoon.

Jeff Salazar steps on home plate following his 7th inning home run

Tides starting pitcher Chris George gave up 5 runs, 4 of which were earned in 5.2 innings work and Zack Clark so new to the team from AA Bowie that he went out in a jersey without his name affixed to it gave up 3 runs in 2.1 innings of which only 1 was an earned run.  Ross Wolf pitched the 9th inning coming in with two on and two out. He got J R House out while trying to bunt and made an excellent play to field the ball and throw out Valentino Pascucci at third. He then got Jesus Feliciano to ground into a double play to end the inning.

Brandon Snyder bunts for a hit

The big damage to the Tides came from the extremely potent Buffalo offense. For once the Bisons’ parent organization the New York Mets has invested in putting experienced and potent offensive force together despite a dearth of young prospects. The Bisons pack a huge offensive punch including Mike Hessman the all-time Minor League home run king but the Chief Tides basher has been Mike Jacobs who has beaten Tides pitching about in a rude and nearly ruthless manner over the past two days as well as former Tides catcher J R House who today had a home run, double plating 3 of the Bisons runs.

However if there is a silver lining in the past three games it is for the first time this season the Tides seem to be hitting the ball consistently using both contact and power to make things happen. The Tides picked up their first run in the bottom of the 2nd inning one singles by Rhyne Hughes, Brandon Snyder and Michel Hernandez. The Bisons collected two in the top of the 3rd inning when Andy Green reached on an error J R House doubled and Jesus Feliciano singled to drive in both Green and House.

The Tides tied the score in the bottom of the 4th as Rhyne Hughes and Brandon Snyder singled and Michel Hernandez sacrificed to right field to score Hughes.  Buffalo then scored 3 runs in the top frame of the 6th driving Tides starter Chris George out of the game and it was as the sage Earl Weaver mentioned, the part about the three run home runs as   J R  House clubbed a three run homer off of George with one out.  However the Tides did not roll over and die as they had in so many games earlier in the season and in the bottom of the 7th the now scrappy Tides offense plated 4 runs.  Michel Hernandez, Blake Davis and Matt Angle singled to load the bases. Robert Andino then hit into a double play but Hernandez scored.  Jeff Salazar then hit a 2 run home run off of Pat Misch to tie the game. Nolan Reimold and Rhyne Hughes singled and Brandon Snyder singled to drive in Reimold before Blake Davis grounded out to end the inning.

Chris George allowed 4 earned runs in 5.2 innings getting no decision

In the top of the 8th the Bisons took the lead when Robert Andino missed what looked to be an easy grounder that easily could have been a double play, the ball rolled into short left field and two runs scored and the Bisons were back in the lead and add an insurance run in the 9th to make the final score 8-6.

The Bisons scored 8 runs on 11 hits with 1 error and 11 men left on base. The Tides 6 runs on 15 hits and 4 errors leaving 8 on base including 5 left in scoring position with 2 outs.

While the Tides offense has come alive the pitching has been weak and they were not helped by four errors which allowed three unearned runs.  In spite of this the Tides are showing signs of life under Interim Manager Bobby Dickerson who took on an umpiring crew that made three obviously bad calls that cost the Tides runs the most egregious being a hit by J R House in the top of the 2nd which should have been a foul ball that was ruled fair and went for a double, a force at second in the top of the 8th which the 2nd base umpire ruled that second baseman Blake Davis who was plowed over at second had been pulled off the bag.  Later in the 8th Mike Hessman was ruled hit by a pitch which had all the marking of a ball that hit the bat before striking him. The last call got Dickerson tossed by Home Plate Umpire Chris Conroy.  Dickerson does not just manage but he leads and appears to inspire. Players that have not been performing have been benched and for the first time in recent memory the Tides took infield practice on a game day. What appears to be the new mantra in the Orioles organization is accountability and chemistry.  Things are not better yet but if I were the Orioles I would make Dickerson the permanent manager of the Tides tomorrow.  It takes time to get the pitching right and I do not see a quick fix to that with the probability that Arietta will be in Baltimore possibly within the week, however it appears that he is bringing some discipline and order back to a team that has a lot of talent but not achieved the success that it is capable of accomplishing. It will be interesting to see what happens in the coming days and weeks as Andy McPhail and the Orioles begin to make the hard choices regarding players and ultimately who will remain in Baltimore and on the 40 man roster.

The Orioles defeated the Red Sox today at Camden Yards 4-3 in 11 innings with David Hernandez getting his first win of the season in relief.

The final game of the season series between the Bisons and Tides will be on Monday at 12:15 as Troy Patton (3-7, 5.73 ERA) will take the hill for the Tides against former Tide Bobby Livingston (2-5, 4.18 ERA).

Peace

Padre Steve+

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Tides Lose in Harbor Park Slugfest 12-9

Andy Mitchell was hit hard in the first two innings and registered the loss despite the Tides Hitters attempts

It was a hot night at the Church of Baseball, Harbor Park Parish as the temperature was high and bats were on fire. If you were looking for a pitcher’s duel this was not the place to see one. In part this was due to Norfolk Tides ace Jake Arietta being pulled from the start the day of the game in what is believed to be a move by the Orioles to have him ready to come to Baltimore in a middle relief role at short notice.  In his place veteran submariner Andy Mitchell got the start, his first start since April.  Unfortunately for Andy it was his worst outing of the year as the veteran Bisons’ line up which has the highest batting average in the league and is loaded with players who have played against him for years had his number. After giving up 6 runs in the 1st inning he lasted 2 and 2/3rds innings giving up a total of 7 runs on 13 hits.  Andy has been at his best this year in middle relief following hard throwing pitchers where his submarine style keeps batters who are locked in on the hard throwing pitchers off balance.

Mike Jacobs hit everyone that he faced including Jake Arietta

Tonight the Bisons had Andy’s number and with 2 outs in the top of the 3rd inning he was pulled for Mike Hinckley who after an inauspicious debut in the 9th inning Friday night pitched 1 and 1/3 innings allowing no runs on hits.  Jake Arrieta came into the game in the 5th to throw two innings gave up another run on 3 hits before handing the ball over to Kam Mickolio in the 7th. Kam who has struggled gave no hint of that on Saturday pitching very well in 1 and 2/3rds innings giving up no runs on 3 hits before being pulled with a 2-0 count against Mike Cervenak appearing to be injured and closer Denis Sarfate came in and struck out Cervenak to end the inning.

Mike Hinckley had a good outing in his second appearance for the Tides

The Tides hitters were not silent and as on Friday night chipped away at the Buffalo lead in a convincing manner in a performance on any normal night would have been a game winning performance.

The comeback started in the bottom of the 2nd inning when Blake Davis and Paco Figueroa both singled and Figueroa stole 2nd setting up Matt Angle who singled to drive in both runners.  In the 5th inning with a runner on and 1 out the improving Nolan Reimold homered to left to make the score 7-4. The Tides scored 2 more runs in the bottom of the 6th.  Adam Donachie singled and reached third on a double by Paco Figueroa.  The Bisons then sent in Michael O’Connor to relieve starter Dylan Owen.  O’Connor promptly threw a wild pitch in the dirt that bounce over the home plate netting into the seats to score Donachie.  He the got Matt Angle to ground out to first before Robert Andino singled to score Figueroa. Jeff Salazar struck out and then Rhyne Hughes singled Andino to 3rd base.  Jose Della Torre came into the game for O’Connor and hit Nolan Reimold with a pitch to load the bases. He then walked Brandon Snyder to score Andino before getting Blake Davis to ground out to first to end the inning.

Nolan Reimold greeted at the plate after hitting a 2 run homer in the 5th inning

Once again the Tides seemed to have momentum on their side but fortune turned against them as Denis Sarfate who has been lights out in the 9th inning gave up 4 runs the big damage coming on a Mike Jacobs bases clearing triple with the bases loaded. This gave the Bisons a 12-7 lead going into the bottom of the 9th.  The Tides did not go quietly into the night however as Brandon Snyder hit a leadoff home run and Blake Davis doubled. Adam Donachie struck out swinging and Paco Figueroa grounded out to move Davis to 3rd base. Davis scored on a wild pitch by Manny Acosta to narrow the lead to 12-9. Matt Angle then singled and it looked like the Tides might be about to pull this one out of the fire, instead Robert Andino flied out to center on a 2-0 pitch to end the game.

Once again the Tides put enough runs on the board to win a game and didn’t. Tonight as Earl Weaver said “The only thing that matters is what happens on the little hump out in the middle of the field” and that was in evidence Saturday as Tides pitchers gave up 10 runs in just two innings.  Had the pitching been there the Tides would have walked away with the win but instead dropped their 4th straight.  On the positive side for the second night in a row the Tides hitters produced hits and runs.

As I said at the beginning of this article this was not a night to see pitching.  The Bisons had 12 runs on 22 hits and no errors and left 11 men on base. The Tides with production that should get a win on any night had 9 runs on 15 hits and 1 error leaving 11 on base. Andy Mitchell (0-1 9.86 ERA) got the loss and Dylan Owen (2-1 6.14 ERA) got the win with Manny Acosta getting the save. The teams play Sunday afternoon at Harbor Park. See you there.

Peace,

Padre Steve+

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Tides Come Back from 6-0 deficit but Lose as Hinkley gives up 4 runs in 9th Inning

Armando Gabino had his worst outing of the year

On a very warm evening the Norfolk Tides looked like they would get a big comeback win. On their first night with Interim Manager Bobby Dickerson at the helm the Tides opened their four game series against the Buffalo Bisons at Harbor Park where a crowd of 6345 gathered to celebrate “Marine Night.”

The Tides managed to rebound from a 6-0 Buffalo lead only to lose in the 9th inning when Michael Hinckley just promoted to Norfolk from AA Bowie loaded the bases with no outs to give up 4 runs in the top of the 9th inning.

Tides starter Armando Gabino had his worst outing of the season giving up 6 runs on 6 hits, though 2 of the runs were unearned due to a fielding error by Second Baseman Blake Davis in the 3rd inning which opened the floodgates. Gabino got into trouble again in the 4th and was relieved by Jim Miller. Miller would settle things down and pitch three innings before yielding to Ross Wolf in the 7th. Wolf too held the Bisons in check as the Tides offense went to work.

Jim Miller continued good work as a middle releiver

Brandon Snyder ignited the Tides in the 5th inning when with one out he hit a line drive over the right field wall into the Tides bullpen. That hit by Snyder rocked Harbor Park. The fans that had been silenced by the Bisons were back in the game and the effect was electric.  Blake Davis then singled and Michel Hernandez walked.  With 2 on and 1 out Matt Angle singled to drive in Davis to cut the lead to 6-2.  In the 5th inning the Tides scored another run when Josh Bell reached second on a throwing error on an infield ground ball.  Nolan Reimold who seems to be improving after a dismal season in Baltimore followed by a worse start in Norfolk singled to drive in Bell making it a 6-3 game.

Matt Angle with one of his four hits

The Tides tied the game in the bottom of the 7th when with 1 out Michel Hernandez singled and advanced to second on a single by Matt Angle.  Hernandez scored when Robert Andino singled and Matt Angle advanced to second base.  Jeff Salazar singled to drive in Angle and move Andino to third base and would score on a sacrifice fly to center to tie the game at six.

Blake Davis Scores in the 5th inning on a Matt Angle Single

It appeared at this point that the Tides had all the momentum and had the Bisons on the ropes.  In the top of the 9th Michael Hinckley who had just been promoted to Norfolk from Bowie when hard luck Pedro Viola was sent down to Bowie made his first AAA appearance.  He gave up a single to former Tides infielder Justin Turner and a double to Mike Jacobs.  He then walked all time Minor League Baseball Home run king Mike Hessman to load the bases.  Now with the bases loaded he walked Russ Adams to give Buffalo the lead.  At this point Bobby Dickerson brought in former Oriole Cla Meredith hoping that Meredith’s Major League experience would pay off and shut down the Bisons before more damage could be done.  This was not the case as the first batter that Meredith faced Valentino Pascucci doubled down the line in right to clear the bases and give the Bisons a 10-6 lead.  Meredith struck out Andy Green but lost it on a wild pitch which put Green on first and Pascucci on third base.  J R House grounded out to score Pascucci before Meredith got Jesus Feliciano to ground out to end the frame. The Tides went down quietly in the bottom of the 9th and the game ended with the final score Buffalo 11 and the Tides 6.

Buffalo had 11 runs on 12 hits with 1 error and 8 men left on base, the Tides 6 runs on 12 hits and 2 errors with 6 runners left on base.  Bisons’ reliever Bobby Parnell (1-1 4.73 ERA) got the “unsave” and the win and Hinckley the loss giving up 4 runs without retiring a batter.

I did notice a couple of things that I thought were important. First Bobby Dickerson did not wait and wait to make pitching changes; he got pitchers out of the game when they got in serious trouble. Unfortunately in the 9th inning he had misplaced confidence in Cla Meredith. The second thing and this was even more important, the Tides hitters got the team back in the game as relievers Miller and Wolf held the Bisons after they had gotten out to the 6-0 lead.  Another note of interest was the continued hitting of Brandon Snyder and the 4 hits of Matt Angle in the lead off position.

The Tides and Bisons play tonight at Harbor Park and it will be a hot one with temperatures in the high 80s at game time. Jake Arietta (6-2 1.77 ERA) will be going for his 7th win of the season against Dylan Owen (1-1 4.76).

See you there.

Peace

Padre Steve+

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Tides Blown Out of Buffalo 11-4: Northern Road Trip Ends with Tides Losing Six of Eight Games….Is there any Hitting in the House?

Frustrated Hitters like Joey Gathright have not had a Good Season so far in 2010

The Tides first northern expedition of the year ended badly in Buffalo on Monday night. On a cool, cloudy and breezy Buffalo night the Tides fell to the Bisons by a score of 11-4.  The game was actually relatively close and could have gone to extra innings but for the 7 runs allowed by the Tides in the 7th and 8th innings.  Tides Starter Troy Patton (2-5 5.53)  gave up 4 runs, three earned on 8 hits in 5.2 innings work.    Jim Miller came into the game to relieve Patton in the bottom of the 6th with 2 outs and retired the first batter that he faced.  Miller gave up a solo home run to Jason Pridie in the bottom of the 7th before retiring the rest of the order.  However the 8th inning was the inning of doom for the Tides as the Bisons’ bats lit up Miller and Pedro Viola for 6 runs on 4 hits which included home runs by Russ Adams and Mike Jacobs and a double by Jesus Feliciano each of which scored two runs.  The Tides tried to rally in the top of the 9th but the rally fell very short with the Tides scoring 2 runs on a series of singles by Josh Bell, Michael Aubrey, Brandon Snyder, Robert Andino and Adam Donachie.  The Tides had scored two runs early in the game when Michael Aubrey hit a two run home run in the top of the 2nd inning.

Rhyne Hughes leads the Tides in batting averaage

The road trip was difficult for the Tides especially in the hitting department. The Tides scored just 21 runs on 57 hits and only 2 home runs.  They were shut out twice with one of those a complete game for the opposing pitcher.  They now sit at the bottom of the International League in the team batting average with a .234 team average and an On Base Percentage of just .299 also the lowest in the league.  They rank third from the bottom in run production with a total of 157 runs in 39 games with a Slugging Percentage of .366 the second lowest in the league.   In some ways the Tides hitting mirrors that of their parent club the Baltimore Orioles.  Who have a .251 average a .310 OBP and scored just 133 runs next to last in the American League with a fourth from the bottom Slugging Percentage of .384.    It is obvious that the Orioles and the Tides need to improve markedly in hitting and run production if they ever want to be competitive.

Former Tides Pitcher Alfredo Simon got the win in Relief in Baltimore while Corey Patterson (below) had a game tying home run in the bottom of the 8th

In the pitching department the Tides are part of the middle of the pack in the International League with an ERA of 4.27.  In a number of pitching categories the Tides are competitive however they have given up 142 walks the most in the League other than Pawtucket and are in the top third of the league in terms of home runs, runs and earned runs.  With the exception of the final game of the series in Buffalo the pitchers kept the Tides in the games despite giving up the long ball in inopportune moments.

While the Tides pitching could improve the pitchers are on the whole improving but the hitters are struggling and players that hit for good averages last year are not getting it done this year. In 2009 Joey Gathright hit .325, Justin Turner .300, Michael Aubrey .290, Scott Moore .254 and Brandon Snyder .248.   By comparison Gathright is hitting .184, Turner .250, Aubrey .266, Moore .256 and Snyder .202.  The team batting average in 2009 was .272 and currently in 2010 .234.  On base percentage 2009 was .330 and this year .299, slugging percentage in 2009 .389 and 2010 just .366.  The Tides have to figure out a way to hit this year otherwise even the improving pitching staff will continue to lose games that on other teams that they would win.   Certainly the talent is there and the hitters are capable of better.  Could it be the change in the hitting coach that occurred with Richie Hebner replacing Dallas Williams who had held the job for four years?  If it is not Hebner certainly there has to be an explanation for this slump.  At the beginning of the season I was not concerned but coming up on a third of the way into the season I am becoming concerned about despite a number of games where the Tides appeared to have broken out of this collective slump but then lapsed back into it.

The Tides played tonight against the Pawtucket Red Sox and lost by a score of 6-0, more on this game tomorrow.

Meanwhile in Baltimore the Orioles defeated teh Royals by a score of 4-3 in the bottom of the 10th inning. Luke Scott hit 2 home runs off of last year’s Cy Young Award winner Zack Greinke.  Former Tides outfielder Corey Patterson hit a home run in the bottom of the 8th inning to tie the game and give the O’s another chance to win.  Former Tides starter and now Orioles closer Alfredo Simon got the win.

Peace

Padre Steve+

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Tides Edge Bisons 5-4 Gabino gets Win and Reimold Homers in Victory

Armando Gabino got his first win as a starter for the Tides

The Norfolk Tides broke a four game losing streak against the Bisons in Buffalo on sunny and mild Sunday afternoon in front of 5819 of the Bison’s’ “Herd.” Today the Tides had enough offense combined with effective pitching to edge the Bisons by a score of 5-4 at Coca Cola Field in Buffalo.

The Tides started Armando Gabino (2-0 1.89) today as their regular number three starter Chris George had been placed on the 7 day DL.  Gabino who had not started a game for the Tides working middle to late relief this year got his second win of the season holding the Bisons to one run on 5 hits in 5 innings striking out 6 in six innings of work in this his longest outing of the season.  Tides relievers managed to hold the potent Bisons offense with Ross Wolf, Denis Sarfate and Frank Mata combining to hold the Bisons to 3 runs on 3 hits with Mata (0-0 S7 2.04) getting the save.

Jeff Salazar had an RBI double

The Tides offense was powered by Nolan Reimold who had a 2 run home run in the 6th inning, Josh Bell with a double and 2 RBIs and Jeff Salazar with a double and an RBI.

The Tides jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the 1st inning when Justin Turner doubled, Jeff Salazar walked and Josh Bell doubled to drive both men in for a 2-0 lead.  In the bottom of the second the Bisons got one of those runs back when Russ Adams doubled and was driven in by Andy Green who also doubled.  The score would remain 2-0 until the 6th inning when Nolan Reimold in his second game with the Tides and his first play first base since 2005 hammered a 2 run home run to give the Tides a 4-1 lead. The Bisons got both of those back in the bottom frame when Mike Jacobs doubled and Mike Hessman the all time Minor League home run leader walked both to be driven home when Russ Adams doubled.  In the top of the 7th inning the Tides scored again as Justin Turner singled and stole second base. Jeff Salazar then doubled to score Turner and extend the Tides lead to 5-3.  Valentino Pascucci homered in the bottom of the 8th inning against Denis Sarfate to narrow the lead to 5-4. Frank Mata came into the game to end the 8th inning and close in the 9th where he got Andy Green to fly out to Joey Gathright in center, Ruben Tejada to line out to Josh Bell at third where bell made a great stop diving to his right to catch the ball for the put out and prevent an extra base hit. Mata then got Jason Pridie to fly out to Gathright to end the game.

Bobby Livingston (1-5 4.35) took the loss while Gabino got the save. The teams complete the series on Monday night with Troy Patton should go to the hill for the Tides while the Bisons starter is not named on their website.  After that game the Tides will travel back to Norfolk to face the Pawtucket Red Sox in a 4 game series beginning Tuesday.

In Tides and Orioles personnel moves Alberto Castillo was called up to the Orioles while Andy Mitchell was brought back off the “taxi squad” while officially being assigned to sing “A” Aberdeen and Rhyne Hughes was optioned back to the Tides from the Orioles.

Alberto Castillo was called back up to Baltimore

In Baltimore the Orioles dropped their second game in a row to the Indians by a score of 5-1.

Until the next time,

Peace

Padre Steve+

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Northern Road Trip gets Frosty: Cold Tides Lose 5-3 and 4-0 in Buffalo

Mike Hessman in his Toledo Mud Hens uniform the all time Minor League Home Run King victimized Chris Tillman and Jake Arietta (James Venes photo 2007)

The Norfolk Tides have dropped their last four consecutive games on their northern road trip. After the last two games of their series against Syracuse including the heartbreaking 2-1 loss on Thursday the Tides have lost two more this time to the Buffalo Bisons the AAA affiliate of the Tides former parent club the New York Mets.  With cool weather and blustery winds the two teams faced off at Coca Cola Field and the Bisons took both Friday and Saturday’s games with Mike Hessman the all time minor league home run king victimizing Chris Tillman and Jake Arietta for his 11th and 12th home runs of the season.

On Friday night in front of 5729 with temperatures in the 50s and winds blowing 17 miles an hour the Tides started Chris Tillman (3-4 3.83) who as of late has done quite well.  Friday was a different matter. Tillman allowed 5 runs 4 of which were earned runs on 8 hits including two home runs in six innings work.  The damage started in the third inning when Tillman allowed a single to Alex Cintron who went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Ruben Tejada. Tillman struck out Jason Pridie but then balked which allowed Pridie to advance to third. Jesus Feliciano then bunted for a single to score Pridie before Tillman got out of the inning getting Mike Jacobs to fly out to right fielder Blake Davis.

The Bisons added three more in the 4th inning beginning with Mike Hessman hitting a home run to left to lead off the inning.  Valentino Pascucci then popped out and Tillman walked Russ Adams.  J R House a former member of the Tides from 2007 who was just signed by the Mets to a minor league contract after playing with the Astros and the Astros organization singled Adams to second.  Alex Cintron grounded to Brandon Snyder at first which Snyder misplayed allowing Adams to score and House to advance to third. Meanwhile Cintron attempted to stretch his good fortune but was thrown out at second by right fielder Blake Davis who had fielded the ball after it got away from Snyder.  Ruben Tejada then singled to score House before Tillman retired Jason Pridie on a pop up to Justin Turner at second.

The Tides came back to score 3 runs in the top of the 5th.  Blake Davis singled to center and went to second on a passed ball. Robert Andino grounded out to second moving Davis to third. Catcher Michel Hernandez grounded out for the second out and Davis had to remain at third.  With two out Joey Gathright reached on an error by second baseman Alex Cintron and Davis scored.  Gathright then stole second and was driven in by Justin Turner who singled to center. Jeff Salazar then singled to right and Turner went to third. Josh Bell singled to score Turner before Nolan Reimold in his first game with the Tides since being optioned by Baltimore to Norfolk grounded into a force play to end the inning.

It seemed that the Tides were back in the game and that their dormant bats were alive again.  However in the bottom of the 6th inning Valentino Pascucci hit a leadoff home run to increase the lead to 5-3.  This was not an insurmountable lead but the Tides managed just one more hit the rest of the game going down in order in the 7th and 8th innings and only managing the hit, a single by pinch hitter Michael Aubrey  with two outs in the top of the 9th.

In the end the Tides had 3 runs on 9 hits and allowed an error the Bisons 5 runs on 11 hits and 1 error. Tillman (3-4 3.83) got the loss and knuckleballer R A Dickey (4-2 2.23) got the win for the Bisons.

The Tides fared worse on Saturday.  Today the Tides would scatter just four hits and only get one runner into scoring position and were shut out by the Bisons 4-0.  Jake Arietta (3-2 2.20) took the hill for the Tides going up against Pat Misch (3-0 3.30). Arietta gave up a run in the 1st inning when Mike Hessman who had victimized Chris Tillman on Friday singled to drive in Jesus Feliciano. The Bisons scored another run in the bottom of the 2nd inning after Arietta walked Andy Green to start the inning and Green advanced to third on a single by Ruben Tejada. He would score on a ground ball by Jason Pridie.  In the bottom of the third the Bisons scored again when Mike Hessman homered to lead off the inning. Hessman was drafted by the Braves in 1996 and has played 15 years in the minors 9 years at the AAA level getting to the majors in only four seasons for a total of 77 games hitting 13 home runs.  Hessman is interesting, he played on the 2008 Bronze Medal US Olympic team has hit 323 home runs in the minor leagues and holds the minor league record for home runs.  The shot in the 3rd inning was his 12th of this season.

The Bisons added a final run in the bottom of the 6th inning when Andy Green homered off Arietta.  Even though Pedro Viola and Denis Sarfate held the Bisons to no more runs once again the Tides could manage no offense and they fell to the Bisons by the score of 4-0.  The Tides final line was 0 runs on 4 hits with one error, the Bisons 4 runs on 5 hits and no errors.  With the loss the Tides drop to 15-22 having lost five of the first six games of the northern road trip and into the cellar of the IL South.  The Tides and Bisons will square off Sunday afternoon. The pitchers are not announced but the number three man in the Tides rotation Chris George was placed on the seven day DL which could move Troy Patton up in the rotation as the Tides have no real starters in the bullpen.  Short reliever Jim Miller was brought back up from Aberdeen.

Up in Baltimore the Orioles who had won their last three games relearned the hard lesson that you have to get 27 outs to win the game. The O’s blew a 2-0 lead to the Cleveland Indians in the 9th inning with Alfredo Simon and Cla Meredith each allowing four runs in an 8 run rally once again denying Brian Matusz his first win of the season.

Peace

Padre Steve+

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