Bulls rally comes up 90 feet short in the ninth in loss to Tides
Norfolk relief ace Jairo Asencio stranded the potential tying run at third base in the top of the ninth as the Tides downed Durham 3-2 in the rain-delayed third game of a four-game set at Harbor Park.
Trailing 3-1 entering the ninth, the Bulls (86-57) rallied behind a leadoff single and a run-scoring three-base error by Tides shortstop Yamaico Navarro on a ground ball by Brandon Guyer.
With Guyer on third, no one out and Evan Frey pinch-hitting for cleanup hitter Vince Belnome, the Bulls appeared ready to even the score. But Asencio got Frey on strikes, nailed Jason Bourgeois on a harmless grounder that held Guyer at third, then intentionally walked Leslie Anderson before retiring shortstop Tim Beckman on a grounder to Navarro to end the game.
The save was Asencio’s 28th.
The start of the game was delayed two hours by rain.
The Bulls managed only three hits off three Norfolk pitchers, including starter and winner Steve Johnson (2-3). Hard-luck starter and loser Matt Buschmann (8-2) gave up three runs in six innings, two earned.
The Tides (77-66), who swept the Bulls in a doubleheader Saturday night by scoring six runs in the bottom of the eighth to erase a 5-1 deficit in the completion of an Aug. 23 suspended game and winning the scheduled seven-inning nightcap on a walk-off single in the bottom of the eighth that snapped a scoreless tie, grabbed an early lead on Sunday.
Chris Dickerson doubled leading off against Buschmann in the first, moved up on a passed ball by Jesus Flores and scored an unearned run on Dan Johnson’s sacrifice fly.
The Bulls got even in the top of the second when Mike Fontenot drove in Tim Beckham with a two-out double.
Dickerson, Buschmann’s bane early, started a go-ahead rally in the bottom of the fifth with a two-out, none-on single. Navarro drove him in with a double for a 2-1 lead.
Navarro continued his hot hitting against the Bulls. His two-run homer in the eighth in Saturday’s first game keyed the Tides’ six-run rally and it was his walk-off single that won Saturday’s second game.
The Tides extended the lead with a run in the sixth. Johnson reached on a leadoff walk and former Bull Jason Pridie’s bunt single to Buschmann put two aboard. Jonathan Schoop’s double made it 3-1 and left runners at second and third with none out, but Buschmann kept them there when he retired the next three batters.
NOTES — Righthander J.D. Martin should take the International League victory title by a four-win margin. He has 16 wins. 12-game winners Jason Berken of Charlotte and Greg Reynolds of Louisville have already made their last starts of the season. Martin is the first IL wins champion with a four-win margin since Lynn Lovenguth of the Toronto Maple Leafs won 24 over Montreal’s Fred Kipp’s 20 in 1956. ... The Bulls’ pitching staff set the IL single-season strikeout record on Saturday. ... The IL South champion Bulls conclude the regular season at Norfolk at 12:05 p.m. today. Recently recalled lefthander Enny Romero (11-7, 2.76 at AA Montgomery) will get the start for the Bulls against fellow lefty Zach Britton (6-5, 4.27) who has pitched off-and-on for the parent Orioles since 2011. His career major league record is 18-17, 4.74 ERA.
Norfolk Tides (77-66) 3, Durham Bulls (86-57) 2
September 1, 2013
|Figueroa, C, 3B||3||1||1||0||1||1||0||.289|
|Anderson, Le, DH||3||0||0||0||1||2||0||.291|
|1-Roberts, R, PR-DH||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.208|
|Beckham, T, SS||3||1||0||0||1||1||2||.277|
|Flores, J, C||3||0||0||0||0||0||1||.178|
a-Struck out for Belnome in the 9th.
1-Ran for Anderson, Le in the 9th.
2B: Fontenot (32, Johnson, S).
TB: Guyer; Fontenot 2; Figueroa, C.
RBI: Fontenot (42).
2-out RBI: Fontenot.
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Flores, J; Belnome; Beckham, T.
Team RISP: 1-for-6.
Team LOB: 5.
PB: Flores, J (3).
DP: (Figueroa, C-Fontenot-Belnome).
|Navarro, Y, SS||4||0||1||1||0||0||2||.267|
|Johnson, D, 1B||1||1||0||1||1||0||1||.252|
|Johnson, S, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Jones, C, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Asencio, J, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
2B: Dickerson (6, Buschmann), Navarro, Y (21, Buschmann), Schoop (11, Buschmann).
TB: Schoop 3; Pridie; Urrutia; Dickerson 3; Navarro, Y 2.
RBI: Johnson, D (70), Navarro, Y (53), Schoop (34).
2-out RBI: Navarro, Y.
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Pridie; Urrutia 2; Wheeler; Exposito 2.
SF: Johnson, D.
Team RISP: 1-for-10.
Team LOB: 7.
SB: Pridie (8, 2nd base off Buschmann/Flores, J).
E: Navarro, Y (18, fielding).
|Buschmann (L, 8-2)||6.0||5||3||2||3||4||0||2.97|
|Johnson, S (W, 2-3)||6.1||2||1||1||2||10||0||4.11|
|Jones, C (H, 7)||1.2||0||0||0||0||1||0||2.58|
|Asencio, J (S, 28)||1.0||1||1||0||1||1||0||2.66|
WP: Buschmann, Johnson, S 2.
IBB: Anderson, Le (by Asencio, J).
HBP: Johnson, D (by Buschmann).
Pitches-strikes: Buschmann 93-55, Liberatore 27-20, Johnson, S 96-63, Jones, C 18-13, Asencio, J 20-12.
Groundouts-flyouts: Buschmann 4-4, Liberatore 2-1, Johnson, S 0-7, Jones, C 3-1, Asencio, J 3-0.
Batters faced: Buschmann 27, Liberatore 7, Johnson, S 23, Jones, C 5, Asencio, J 6.
Umpires: HP: Max Guyll. 1B: Tom Honec. 3B: David Soucy.
Weather: 89 degrees, cloudy.
Wind: 10 mph, R to L.
T: 2:34 (2:00 delay).
Venue: Harbor Park.