NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — The Norfolk Tides captured a pair of one-run victories with walk-off home runs, sweeping a doubleheader from the Syracuse Chiefs Thursday afternoon at Harbor Park.
In the opener, Luis Sardiñas led off the seventh frame with a solo home run to give the Tides a 2-1 victory.
Sardiñas belted a 3-1 offering from former Tide Josh Edgin (4-3) off the roof of the left field picnic area for his second home run of the season. Sardiñas is now batting .291 (23-79) with a home run and 11 RBI in 21 games with the Tides this month.
Norfolk had trailed the contest 1-0 entering the sixth frame, but the Tides knotted the score courtesy of a two-out balk by Edgin. Breyvic Valera hit a one-out single before moving to second on a walk to DJ Stewart, with Valera advancing to third on a fly ball to center by Pedro Álvarez. Edgin then balked on a pickoff throw to first base, plating Valera to knot the score at 1-1.
Making his first appearance with the Tides, Cody Carroll (4-0) – acquired in Tuesday’s trade with the Yankees for LHP Zach Britton – earned the victory after striking out a pair in a scoreless inning of relief.
Making his first career outing at Harbor Park, Norfolk starter Lucas Long allowed a run on three hits over 3.2 innings of work. He walked one and struck out three before giving way to Luis Gonzalez, who also struck out three over 2.1 innings of scoreless relief.
In game two, the Tides won a wild extra-inning affair, as Breyvic Valera hit a two-run, inside-the-park home run to power Norfolk to a 6-5, 13-inning victory.
The contest was scoreless headed into extra innings, and the teams traded single runs in the 8th, 10th, 11th and 12th innings to head to the 13th tied at 4-4. The Chiefs plated a run in the top of the 13th off of Tim Melville (7-6) to take the lead, but Valera opened the bottom of the 13th with a deep fly ball to right field off of Christopher Smith (3-3). The ball hit off the fence just above a leaping Alejandro de Aza and caromed towards the right field line, sending Cedric Mullins – who opened the inning on second base – in to score easily. Valera followed Mullins home, sliding in ahead of a high throw to give the Tides their third walk-off victory in the last two days.
The 13-inning contest was Norfolk’s longest of the season, while the walk-off victory was the 11th for the Tides this year. The inside-the-park home run was the first of Valera’s career, and was the second for the Tides this season after Mike Yastrzemski also accomplished the feat on June 8th at Toledo. Norfolk won three of four games in the series – all in walk-off fashion.
Five Tides hurlers combined to limit the Chiefs to just five hits in the contest, walking three while striking out 12.
With the doubleheader sweep, the Tides (56-47) improved to 11-3 in doubleheaders this season and have won nine of their last 10 games. Norfolk now owns a 1.5 game lead in the IL Wild Card chase.