NORFOLK, VA-Norfolk used an early offensive outburst and seven strong innings from the bullpen to top the Toledo Mud Hens 3-2 Wednesday night at Harbor Park. The Tides plated two first inning runs on four hits off of Duane Below (8-4), with Cord Phelps and Ivan De Jesus driving in runs with consecutive two-out RBI singles. After the Mud Hens plated a run in the third inning, Norfolk extended its lead to 3-1 in the fifth inning on a sacrifice fly from Christian Walker. Norfolk made the early offense hold up, as the relief trio of Nick Additon, Ramon Ramirez and Evan Meek combined to allow one run on four hits while striking out four.
Additon (6-5) earned the win with an outstanding effort as he tossed five shutout innings. He yielded three hits without walking a batter and struck out four as he retired each of the last 11 batters he faced. Over his last two relief appearances, the 26-year-old southpaw has now gone 2-0 with just four hits allowed over 8.1 shutout innings. Ramirez worked a scoreless eighth inning, while Meek surrendered a solo home run in the ninth inning before earning his eighth save of the season.
Making his first start for Norfolk since May 13, Steve Johnson allowed one run on one hit in two-plus innings of work. Johnson, who had spent over two months on the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation, walked three and hit a batter while striking out one as he threw 20 of his 42 pitches for strikes.
Phelps finished with two hits to lead the offense, as eight different Tides batters registered hits in the contest. With the win, Norfolk improved to 17-2 against the Mud Hens over the last three seasons, and the Tides have now won nine straight home contests against Toledo. The Tides, who have yet to sweep a four-game series this season, swept the Mud Hens in four games at Harbor Park a year ago.