Norfolk 4, Charlotte 3
Pedro ├ülvarez homered as part of a three-hit night and Johnny Giavotella continued his hot hitting with a go-ahead single as Norfolk rallied to edge Charlotte 4-3 Thursday night at Harbor Park.
Trailing 3-0, ├ülvarez got the Tides on the board in the fourth inning with an opposite-field solo home run off Lucas Giolito - the #2 prospect in the White Sox organization. One inning later, he touched up Giolito for a two-run double off the center field wall, plating Paul Janish and Giavotella to knot the score at 3-3.
├ülvarez continued his breakout night with a double down the right field line in the seventh frame, giving him his first multi-hit contest since April 19th. The 30-year-old right fielder now has a team-leading 22 RBI this season, good for 13th in the International League.
Giavotella gave the Tides the lead in seventh with a two-out single off of Zack Burdi (0-2), scoring Michael Bourn from third base. Giavotella's single came on the 10th pitch of his at-bat and gave him a hit in eight of his last nine games, over which he's batted .389 (14-36) with seven RBI.
Paul Fry (1-0) earned the win with 2.0 shutout innings of relief before he gave way to Edwin Jackson, who recorded the final four outs of the contest to earn his first save of the season. The save was Jackson's first at the minor league level since he registered five saves with the Durham Bulls as a 22-year-old in 2006.
Norfolk starter Jayson Aquino fell behind 2-0 just two batters into the game, as Adam Engel hit a two-run homer in the first frame to give the Knights the early advantage. Aquino rallied back to salvage his outing, allowing one more run over 5.2 innings of work to take his first no-decision of the season. The 24-year-old left-hander yielded six hits in the contest, working around five walks while throwing 67 of his 110 pitches for strikes.
With the win, Norfolk has now won six of its last seven games vs. Charlotte since opening the season with four straight losses at BB&T Ballpark.
The two teams will continue their four-game set on Friday night at Harbor Park, with first pitch set for 7:05. Chris Lee (2-1, 5.46) gets the start for Norfolk and will be opposed by right-hander Tyler Danish (1-3, 3.32).
Notes: Johnny Giavotella made his first start of the season at third base...Chance Sisco, the #1 prospect in the Orioles system, doubled twice in three at-bats against Lucas Giolito, the #2 prospect in the White Sox organization...The two leadoff batters - Michael Bourn and Lucas May - combined to go 1-for-2 with seven walks...The one-run contest was Norfolk's 16th one-run game this season, tied with Toledo for most in the IL.
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