Clippers split doubleheader with Tides
NORFOLK- A double header Thursday night ended in a split between the Columbus Clippers and the Norfolk Tides. Columbus' offense controlled the entire first game which was the completion of the suspended game on ednesday, and ultimately won 10-3. The momentum of the night transferred during the break to the Tides, who shut out the Clippers winning 5-0 in the nightcap.
Columbus got an early jump on the Tides in the first inning. Tim Fedroff led off the inning with a single and then reached second when Ezequiel Carrera grounded out to Norfolk second basemanBrian Roberts. Jeremy Hermida earned the RBI with a single to center field to put the Clippers up 1-0.
Juan Diaz started the second inning with a ground ball to left field for a single and Omir Santos followed with a single to put runners on first and second. After a sacrifice bunt by Nate Spears moved Diaz to third and Santos to third, Matt Lawson sent a sacrifice fly to center field to score Diaz.
The third inning paralleled the first two innings. Carrera led off singling on a bunt then advanced to third after a throwing error by the Tides third baseman. Cord Phelps came up with a sacrifice fly to left field scoring Carrera.
Starting pitcher Danny Salazar held the Tides to one hit in the first two innings, but late in the third was the first time Norfolk could earn a run. Salazar walked the first two batters then due to a passed ball by catcher Santos both runners advanced a base. A sacrifice fly to left field scored base runner Trayvon Robinson for the Tides first run.
With one out in the fourth, third baseman Nate Spears smacked a ground-rule double before heavy rains came and the game was suspended and scheduled to resume the next day. When play resumed, Lawson stepped up to face new Norfolk pitcher Mike Belfiore and drew a walk. Fedroff then came up with a line drive single to right field, scoring Spears. Carrera took the plate doubling to left field, clearing the bases and putting the Clippers in the lead 6-1.
C.C. Lee came in to replace Salazar in the bottom of the fourth. Lee let up a single early before earning two outs. Norfolk's catcher then hit a double, scoring their second run of the game. Lee only faced one batter after the single RBI before ending the inning.
The fifth inning proved to be another strong one for Columbus. Diaz hit a sharp ground ball to reach first base and then Santos hit an infield pop fly for a single. Spears smacked a single scoring Diaz and loading the bases. Lawson came up big for the Clippers sending a fly ball out to left field for a double which scored Santos and Spears.
Bryan Price was called on to replace Lee on the mound in the fifth inning. Price pitched the next three innings without allowing a run or a hit, striking out four Norfolk batters. The strong performance rewarded Price with his first win of the season.
A pitching changed by the Tides brought Columbus back on the board. Lawson was walked to first for the second time in the game. Fedroff followed up with a single line drive to right field. With one out Phelps then singled to load the bases. Hermida hit a sacrifice fly to center field for his second RBI of the night.
Columbus retrieved closer Chris Jakubauskas pitched the last two innings of the game. Jakubauskas allowed three hits and one run late in the ninth before ending the game with the Clippers ahead 10-3.
After a brief period of rest a second shortened seven inning game began.
The Tides chose to send Jake Arrieta to the mound. Arrieta kept the Clippers bats almost completely quiet. Fedroff was the only Columbus batter to record a hit throughout the game. Arrieta pitched the entire seven innings earning the win.
Daisuke Matsuzaka started the second game on the mound for Columbus pitching five innings. Matsuzaka allowed all five of Norfolks five runs. Two of the Tides runs came in the third inning, while the other three were earned in the fourth.
In the fourth inning two of the runs were earned after Matsuzaka walked the Tides lead of batter, then gave up a home run to Brandon Waring. Immediately afterwards Matsuzaka gave up another home run for the third run of the inning.
Matsuzaka pitched his way out of the fourth after a coaching visit and he continued pitching in the fifth. Although Matsuzaka ultimately pitched three scoreless innings against the tide, the loss was handed to him.
Clay Rapada was called to the mound by the Clippers to close in the sixth. Rapada allowed one hit during his outing, holding the Tides scoreless in the final inning.
Columbus has struggled to regain their position as the number two team in the International League West Standings, they are currently three games behind the second place Louisville Bats.
Friday night's game will feature Clipper's pitcher TJ House. House and he will face the Tides for the final game of the series.