Triple-A: Norfolk Tides 15, Buffalo (Blue Jays) 10
The Tides’ penultimate game this season was a doozy. The pitching staff allowed 10 runs, but the Blue Jays affiliate’s reliever corps was worse, with nine runs surrendered in the last two innings alone.
The Tides entered the eighth inning with a 7-6 deficit, but they made quick work of flipping the scoreboard. Jackson Holliday doubled home two runs to give his team the lead, Coby Mayo drove Holliday home with an RBI single, and Kyle Stowers put a cap on the inning with a two-run homer.
Buffalo came within one run of tying the game in the bottom half of the inning, but with the game at 11-10, the Tides mounted another emphatic rally in the ninth. It all came with two outs: the Tides loaded the bases with a single and a pair of walks, and then Colton Cowser and Coby Mayo each cracked a two-run double. Game: in the bag.
Cade Povich would have had a nice Saturday, allowing just two runs in his first five innings. But he put two baserunners on in the sixth and T.J. MacFarland allowed both to come home. Povich finishes his 2023 with an 8-10 record and a 5.36 ERA. The relief corps was shaky. Bryan Baker continues to look homer-prone, allowing a three-run bomb in the seventh. Wandisson Charles let the Bisons back into the game with a three-run inning of his own in the eighth. Thankfully, Nick Vespi (potential Orioles postseason bullpen piece?) was up to the task of playing the stopper, and pitched a shutout ninth.
It was an excess of riches for the offense, as the Tides had 16 hits and 32 total bases in Saturday’s slugfest. Jackson Holliday went 3-for-4 with 4 RBI on a homer and a double. Connor Norby doubled, walked and scored. Colton Cowser went 2-for-5 with a double and 3 RBI. Coby Mayo kept up his mashing ways, going 3-for-6 with 4 RBI on a homer, single and double. And Kyle Stowers homered twice.
Sunday’s Scheduled Game
Norfolk is at Buffalo for a 12:00 game. Justin Ambruester (2-4, 4.50 ERA) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Tides. This is the final regular season game for Norfolk, who will start a playoff series on Tuesday.