Dosch, Rosa Lead Tides over Charlotte
Drew Dosch drove in three runs while Garabez Rosa added two run-scoring singles to help lead Norfolk to a 6-4 win over the Charlotte Knights Thursday night at Harbor Park.
The Tides had trailed the contest 2-0 in the third inning, but a sacrifice fly by Dosch and an RBI single from Rosa knotted the score at 2-2. Andrew Susac followed with a run-scoring groundout off of Michael Kopech (2-5) to give the Tides a 3-2 lead.
Dosch extended Norfolk's advantage an inning later, lacing a two-run double into the left-center field gap to put the Tides on top 5-2. It was the team-leading 16th double of the season for Dosch, who has hit .287 with 17 RBI this season.
The Knights pulled within 5-4 in the eighth inning on a two-run home run from Avisail Garcia, but Rosa gave the Tides an insurance run in the bottom half of the inning with a two-out single that scored Steve Wilkerson.
Jhan Mariñez made the lead hold up, retiring all four batters he faced to earn his eighth save of the season and lift Norfolk to a win in the opener of the four-game set. Joely Rodriguez (3-2) earned the win, yielding one hit while striking out a pair over 2.1 innings of relief.
Jimmy Yacabonis, continuing his conversion from a reliever to a starter, turned in another solid start but did not factor in the decision. He allowed two runs on four hits over 4.2 innings of work, striking out five without walking a batter while throwing 47 of his 75 pitches for strikes. Over his last six starts, Yacabonis has now gone 3-0 with a 1.27 ERA (4 ER, 28.1 IP), a stretch that has lowered his career ERA with Norfolk to 1.97 - the 2nd-lowest in franchise history behind the 1.85 career ERA posted by Oliver Drake.
Kopech, the #2 prospect in the White Sox system and the #10 overall prospect in Minor League Baseball, struggled with his control as he yielded five runs over three-plus innings of work. Kopech issued eight walks, hit two batters and uncorked five wild pitches in his outing, throwing 35 of his 86 pitches for strikes.
The Tides and Knights will continue their series on Friday night at Harbor Park, with first pitch slated for 7:05. Tim Melville (5-4, 4.70) will make the start for Norfolk and be opposed by right-hander Carson Fulmer (2-2, 3.68). On Friday, the first 2,000 fans ages 17 and under will receive the first of three sets of Tides baseball cards, courtesy of John's Tax Service and SKY4 TV.
Notes: On Thursday, LHP Donnie Hart was activated to Norfolk's roster after he was optioned from Baltimore... Steve Wilkerson singled, doubled, walked and scored three runs...Charlotte walked 10 batters in the contest, while Norfolk did not issue a walk...DJ Stewart drew three walks in the contest, giving him a team-high 24 walks in 44 games this season...Cedric Mullins singled in the sixth inning to extend his hitting streak to six games.
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