Redbirds’ comeback falls short

Down six runs early, Memphis left the tying run at third in the ninth

by Alex Coil

The Memphis Redbirds fought back late but ultimately lost 6-5 to the Norfolk Tides on Friday night at AutoZone Park. It marks the Redbirds’ fourth straight loss.

Trailing by three in the bottom of the ninth, the Redbirds loaded the bases with no one out. Chase Pinder then lifted a sacrifice fly to bring in the runner at third. A flyout to center field advanced Cory Spangenberg to third base and placed runners at the corners with two outs. Evan Mendoza decided to steal second, and an errand throw by the catcher brought Spangenberg home and allowed Mendoza to head to third. He was stranded there, however, as Ivan Herrera flied out to right field to end the game.

Herrera had an excellent night outside of that, going 3-for-5 with two home runs and three RBIs. Trailing 6-0, he tallied a solo home run in the bottom of the fourth to put Memphis on the board and added a two-run blast in the sixth to make it a 6-3 deficit.

Norfolk struck early on a two-run triple by Brett Phillips in the second inning. In the fourth, the Tides put up four runs, thanks to an RBI single from Jordan Westburg and a three-run home run from Joey Ortiz.

Chris Vallimont (5-6) pitched 5.2 relief innings for the Tides in the win. Garrett Williams (0-6) took the loss after allowing the two runs in the second inning.

The Redbirds brought the tying run to the plate in the seventh and eighth innings but did not score until the ninth.

The Memphis Redbirds (65-68) continue their seven-game series against the Norfolk Tides (65-68) on Saturday afternoon. LHP Matthew Liberatore is scheduled to start against RHP Mike Baumann. First pitch for game one is scheduled for 3:05pm CDT. The first 1,500 fans through the gate will receive a replica of the Albert Pujols’ Red Chair sitting in the right field burm. For tickets and more information, visit

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Communications and Public Relations Assistant/Broadcaster for the Memphis Redbirds

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