Clippers walk off to 4-3 win in extras
COLUMBUS - It took extra innings, but the Clippers pulled it out as they defeated the Norfolk Tides 4-3 in eleven innings.
The Tides would strike first offensively in the top of the third. After a two out double by Xavier Avery, Nate McLouth sent a fly-ball out towards the right field wall. The ball sailed over Russ Canzler's head, allowing Avery to score rather easily as Norfolk staked itself to an early 1-0 lead.
Norfolk would then tack on another run in the top of the fourth when Brandon Waring launched a long solo shot that snuck just inside the left field foul pole, making 2-0 Tides.
Columbus would get things going offensively in the bottom of the fifth. Jared Goedert walked to begin the inning. Chad Huffman would then get the Clippers on the board with an RBI double to left center field gap. After Huffman moved up to third on a passed ball by Norfolk catcher Caleb Joseph, Matt Pagnozzi tied the game 2-2 with an RBI single to left. A Gregorio Petit single and a Trevor Crowe walk would load the bases with nobody out. Jason Donald would then ground into a double play, but it allowed Pagnozzi to score, enabling the Clippers to take the lead 3-2.
That 3-2 advantage ended up not holding up in the top of ninth as Chris Ray blew the save opportunity by surrendering a two out RBI single to Blake Davis. The Clippers could not do anything in the bottom half of the frame so both teams went to extra innings still deadlocked at 3-3.
There would be no scoring of runs until the bottom of the eleventh. Matt LaPorta led off the frame with a double off of the left field wall. Canzler then grounded to second baseman Bill Hall. Hall threw to third to try to get Ezequiel Carrera, who had come in to pinch run for LaPorta. Hall's throw was off-target as the speedy Carrera slid in safely at third. Following a Goedert strikeout, Chad Huffman played the role of hero by lining a single to deep center, driving home Carrera and delivering a win for Columbus. Matt Langwell (W, 1-0) received the win for the Clippers. Greg Burke (L, 0-1) was tagged with the loss for the Tides.
Columbus and Norfolk will be back at it on Wednesday night. Left-hander Chris Seddon (7-4, 3.83) will start on the mound for the Clippers. The Tides will roll out right-hander Chris Tillman (7-8, 3.76). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 pm.