Amid all the struggles the Tides were having, one thing that offered a hope of relief was a series with the Rochester Red Wings.
A team that came into the series losers of 17 straight and counting, it looked like the type of series the Tides could use to turn their fortunes around.
Unfortunately, what has been an issue for some time has continued to plague the Tides and has left them without a series win in their last six attempts.
Once again, they failed to win a series where their pitching was unable to keep an opponent below four runs in any game, which resulted in a 3-3 series split.
It wasn’t all bad, as the offense scored four or more runs in five of the six games. The offense continues to be the strong point of Norfolk’s season.
Of course, you can’t mention the Norfolk Tides without mentioning MLB’s No. 4 propsect, Gunnar Henderson.
Henderson, who has a nine-game on-base streak, was 7-for-22 (.318 avg.) for the series, including his fifth multi-hit game of the month.
In Sunday’s 12-7 victory, Henderson would go 3-for-6 with a double and a home run, while stealing a base, collecting three RBIs and scoring two runs in the game.
Henderson’s home run, his 10th with Norfolk, gave him 18 on the season, which is a career-high. He is batting .301 on the year with 67 RBIs, 18 stolen bases and 73 walks, with an OPS of .970.
Even more impressive is that Henderson has 24 multi-hit games in 99 games across two levels this season.
Of course, Kyle Stowers had an equally impressive series, collecting three multi-hit games in the six-game set and finishing hitting .304 for the series.
Stowers’ biggest game came in Tuesday’s 11-4 Tides’ victory. For the game, Stowers would go 2-for-3 at the plate with two walks, a double, his 19th home run, a run scored and five RBIs.
Stowers is now hitting .269 on the season, .311 for the month of August, with 19 home runs and 77 RBIs, with an OPS of .901.
Bruce Zimmermann turned in the strongest pitching performance of the week. As he works his way back from early season troubles in the bigs, the young lefty is bringing it together in Triple-A.
In Thursday’s 5-4 loss, a loss that ended the Red Wings’ 19-game losing streak, Zimmermann would pitch five innings in the game. He would allow only four hits and one run, striking out two for the game and throwing 75 pitches, 47 of them going for strikes.
Though he did not receive a decision, Zimm is 3-1 on the season and lowered his ERA to 3.83. He has pitched 40 innings, collecting 36 strikeouts to 11 walks and has also yielded just one home run in eight games, six starts.
While pitching will be the area of need for the Tides going forward, they are slated to get some help, as Drew Rom and Ryan Watson will join the Tides this week after being promoted from Double-A Bowie.
Norfolk is off Monday before they welcome the Durham Bulls to town for a series starting Tuesday. Game time is 6:35 p.m. EST and is Baseball Card Give Away Night, where the first 2,000 fans 17 and under will receive the second of three packs as part of the team set.
Who stood out to you for Norfolk this week? Let us know in the comments below! And make sure to follow The Baltimore Battery on Facebook and Twitter, and use the hashtag #baltimorebattery when sharing our content!
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