Norfolk Sweeps Doubleheader from Pawtucket
Norfolk used a 14-hit attack and a solid outing from Freddy Garcia to sweep a doubleheader from the Pawtucket Red Sox in front of 6,425 fans Tuesday night at Harbor Park.
In game one, Norfolk won a back-and-forth affair by pounding out 14 hits in a 9-7 win.
After falling behind 2-0 in the first, Norfolk knotted the score in the bottom of the frame on a two-run double by Alex Liddi. The Pawsox answered back with two runs in the second inning to take a 4-2 lead, but Norfolk responded with four runs of their own in the second frame on a three-run double by Buck Britton and an RBI single by L.J. Hoes.
Pawtucket once again plated two runs in the third inning to knot the score at 6-6, but the Tides put up another crooked number in the bottom half on a two-run single by Xavier Avery. Avery's single gave Norfolk an 8-6 lead against Pawsox starter Steven Wright (4-6) after three innings of play.
After Zach Britton yielded six runs - four earned - in his three innings of work, Daniel McCutchen (2-1) earned the win after allowing one run in three innings of relief. The only run McCutchen surrendered came via a sixth inning solo home run by Dan Butler, Butler's second solo home run of the game.
Pawtucket brought the go-ahead run to the plate with one out in the seventh inning against Adam Russell, but Russell retired the final two batters to lock up the win and register his third save of the season.
Liddi and Britton each finished with three hits and three runs batted in, while Yamaico Navarro added two doubles and a single in four at-bats.
In the nightcap, Garcia (6-2) allowed one run over five solid innings to pitch the Tides to a 5-1 win. The 36-year-old veteran yielded three hits and struck out five as he won his second straight decision. Garcia, who walked a season-high three, threw 54 of his 87 pitches for strikes.
With the score knotted at 1-1 in the third, Liddi gave Garcia all the run support he would need when he lined a two-out triple into left-center field, scoring Thames from first. Thames then helped to extend Norfolk's lead to 4-1 one inning later when he plated Hoes with a two-out run-scoring single.
Jason Pridie capped the scoring with a solo home run in the sixth - his team-leading 13th homer of the season.
The Tides and Pawsox will continue their four-game series Wednesday night, with first from Harbor Park slated for 7:05. Knuckleballer Eddie Gamboa (0-1, 7.20) will make his first start at home this season against right-hander Rubby De La Rosa (2-2, 3.90).
Notes: With Rochester's 8-1 loss to Lehigh Valley, Norfolk regained the IL Wild Card lead, pulling 1.0 game ahead of the Red Wings...Eric Thames is now 9-for-17 in four games since joining the Tides on July 20... Pawtucket threw four wild pitches in the nightcap... The doubleheader was Norfolk's first doubleheader sweep in seven attempts this season...Zach Britton has now posted a 6.97 ERA in seven starts at home compared to a 2.23 ERA in six starts on the road.
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