Norfolk homers three times to earn first series win at Harbor Park
The Norfolk Tides (38-40) closed out this six-game series against the Gwinnett Stripers (37-41) with a 6-3 win on Sunday night at Harbor Park. The Tides earned their first series win at home this season and end their season series against the Stripers with an 8-10 record.
The Stripers jumped all over Tides starter Bruce Zimmermann in the opening frame, scoring three times on four hits on the aid of two errors by the home team. But Zimmermann settled in and posted nothing but zeroes in his next 6.0 innings of work and allowed just four hits, all singles, during that span. He struck out six batters in total and did not issue a walk in his second-straight quality start.
Buyoed by Zimmermann’s outing, Norfolk began to chip away at the lead in the second, when Yusniel Diaz crushed a two-run home run to cut the Gwinnett lead to one. The Tides would then take the lead for good in the fourth, where Jacob Nottingham led off the inning with a solo shot to tie the contest and Anthony Bemboom then followed with a single. He would later score the go-ahead run on a two-out RBI-double from Jordan Westburg.
Kyle Stowers added some insurance in the seventh, with a titanic blast to center field to make it 5-3. Stowers now has 15 home runs this season, tied for the most in the organization. Gunnar Henderson also added a run in the eighth with a two-out single to score Cadyn Grenier.
Kevin Smith followed in relief, tossing 2.0 scoreless frames to earn his second save of this series. Smith had entered this six-game set with just one save in his professional career. The lefty struck out two batters and walked just one.
The Tides travel to Jacksonville tomorrow for the first of the two Monday games they will play this season against the Jumbo Shrimp. The Tides are set to start RHP Cody Sedlock (3-1, 6.50) and the Jumbo Shrimp will counter with RHP Elieser Hernández (3-1, 3.43). First pitch is slated for 7:05 p.m.