Orioles 9/26 minor-league recap: Rutschman has three hits, Diaz scored in Norfolk loss
Triple-A: Charlotte Knights (White Sox) 6, Norfolk Tides 5
The Tides lost this game on a bizarre play in the bottom of the ninth, described in the box score as “Marco Hernandez on a sacrifice volley to third baseman Tyler Nevin in foul territory.” Ronny Gonzalez scores. Does a walkout bag fly off on a third place pop-up foul? I couldn’t find a video of the play, but I’m curious how it went. Looks like this was a Gonzalez baserunning game, so kudos to him.
Before that, the Tides fought pretty well, using their seven hits to score five points. Overall, No.1 prospect Adley Rutschman, as a DH, had three of those hits, all in singles, and is now beating .321 with an .845 OPS in Norfolk. Trailing 5-2 in the ninth, Norfolk scored three runs to equalize, topped by a two-run single from Robert Neustrom. Neustrom also got a basics-laden walk earlier in the game.
And hey, look who hit – Yusniel Diaz! The ill-fated outfield prospect (# 12), arriving at the end of an atrocious season, delivered his first long ball in just over three months (June 25). He still just beats .162 with a .472 OPS total for Norfolk, but maybe he can get some momentum during this final week of the season to send him into the winter on a good note. Elsewhere, it was a tough night for No.29 Nevin, who went 0-for-4 with a pitch error and let the winning score score on the contextual foul. Kyle Stowers (# 11) went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts but still hits .297 with an .844 OPS at Triple-A.
Four of the Tides’ five pitchers in that game have spent time in the majors this season, and that quartet – Dean Kremer, Paul Fry, Dusten Knight and Manny Barreda – combined to pitch six innings without allowing a earned run. Kremer was dazzled with three no-hitting innings, two marches and five strikeouts, although he was pulled out a bit early, perhaps to keep him as a starting option for the Orioles last week. The news wasn’t so good for right-hander Blaine Knight, who spat five runs and six hits in 2.2 innings of relief, bumping his ERA to 8.85 in six games at Norfolk.
Match scheduled for Sunday:
Norfolk: in Charlotte, 4:45 p.m. Starter: Ryan Hartman (1-1, 5.19)