(UPTOWN CHARLOTTE, NC) -- For a second straight day, Willy Garcia connected on a home run and the Charlotte Knights reaped the benefits.
Garcia launched his second home run of the season, Tyler Danish scattered five hits over five solid innings, and the Charlotte Knights beat the Norfolk Tides by a score of 4-3 on Sunday at BB&T Ballpark. With the win, the Knights earned a four-game series sweep over the Tides and improved to 4-0 to start the season.
Charlotte's 4-0 start to the 2017 campaign - the team's 30th in franchise history -- is their first since 2011 when they began the year at 5-0. Sunday's win, combined with a Durham Bulls loss, moved the Knights into sole possession of first place in the IL South Division. The two teams will continue their in-state rivalry and begin a competitive four game series on Monday from Durham, NC.
Danish (1-0, 1,80) was sharp in his season debut on Sunday to help the Knights remain undefeated. The Florida native walked one batter and struck-out two en route to his second win in eight games at the Triple-A level. His only blemish on the day was a third inning solo home run to Chris Dickerson.
The Knights, who entered the game on Sunday having scored 35 runs over their first three games, scored just four on Sunday but it was enough to complete the sweep. Garcia finished the game 2-for-3 with two runs scored, a walk, and an RBI. Jason Bourgeois, who is in his fourth season with the Knights, also chipped in with two hits. Bourgeois, 35, moved into sole possession of fourth place on the Charlotte Knights all-time hits list (348) - passing Yolmer Sanchez.
RHP Zack Burdi, the sixth-ranked prospect in Chicago's organization as rated by Baseball America, came on to close the game out in the ninth inning. Despite some struggles - including giving up a two hits, a run, and a walk -- Burdi fanned two batters and earned his first save of the season. He came on in the ninth inning after reliever Chris Beck was electric in the 7th and 8th innings. Beck allowed just one hit over two shutout frames. He struck-out two batters.
The Knights will now make the trek to Durham, NC and open a four-game series against the Durham Bulls on Monday night from Durham Bulls Athletic Park. RHP Mike Pelfrey will make his 2017 Charlotte Knights debut against Durham RHP Chase Whitley. Pelfrey was signed by the Chicago White Sox on Saturday and assigned to Charlotte. He won a season-best 15 games for the New York Mets in 2010. First pitch on Monday is set for 6:05 p.m. from the DBAP. The Knights return home to BB&T Ballpark on Tuesday, April 18th to host the Pawtucket Red Sox.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.