Herlis Rodriguez hit a solo home run, and Jose Taveras tossed six scoreless innings as the IronPigs (70-53) defeated the Norfolk Tides (57-66) by the score of 6-1 Thursday afternoon at Harbor Park.
Taveras was sensational in just his fourth start in Triple-A, as the right-hander blanked the Tides over six scoreless frames. The Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic native struck out six Norfolk batters while walking a pair and yielded just one hit in route to his second Triple-A victory.
The Pigs bats also picked up their pitcher, as they racked up 11 hits after managing a combined 10 hits in the first two games of the series.
One of those big hits came off the bat of center fielder Herlis Rodriguez, who drilled a solo home run off Tides starter Tyler Wilson in the top of the sixth inning to take a 5-0 lead at the time.
Andrew Pullin drove home the games first run in the top of the first inning, as he grounded into a force out that plated Scott Kingery to give the Pigs a 1-0 lead.
It was the Pigs first run scored in 24 innings of play, and their first of the series against the Tides in Norfolk.
For Kingery, he led off the game with a base hit to right field, extending his hitting streak to 15 games and has hit safely in 31 of his last 32 contests. The 23-year-old also became the first IronPigs player to have two hitting streaks of 15 games or more in the same season.
The offense wasn't done there, as the Pigs bats opened up a 4-0 lead with a three-run fourth inning. Kingery singled home Rodriguez to up the Pigs lead to 2-0.
Brock Stassi then added on to the Pigs lead two batters later, as the first baseman doubled home Kingery and J.P. Crawford to double the Pigs lead to 4-0.
Norfolk scored their lone run in the bottom of the seventh inning, as Francisco Pena grounded out to Kingery, allowing Pedro Alvarez to score to break up the shutout as the Pigs led 5-1.
Alexis Rivero came on to pitch in the eighth inning, spelling Pigs reliever Michael Mariot who surrendered the run. Rivero quickly found himself in trouble, loading the bases before Chris Johnson lined out to Kingery to keep the bases loaded with just one out in the frame.
Cesar Ramos was then called upon to get the Pigs out of dodge with the bases juiced. Drew Dosch came to the plate and flied out to center field, Paul Janish attempted to tag on the play but Rodriguez would field the out and throw home and doubled up Janish to erase the threat.
The Pigs picked up a big insurance run in the top of the ninth inning, as Angelo Mora sent a double to left, as Pullin scored on a fielding error by Chris Johnson to up the Pigs lead to 6-1.
Ramos finished the game for the Pigs and picked up his first save of the season for the Pigs, securing a 6-1 victory.
The Pigs now travel to Charlotte, NC to face the Knights for a three-game series beginning Friday night. The Pigs will send right-hander Jake Thompson (5-12 ,5.13) and the Knights had yet to announce a starter. First pitch from BB&T Ballpark is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
The 2017 Season is the IronPigs 10th Anniversary season at Coca-Cola Park and 10th as the top affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies. The IronPigs are debuting the brand-new Bacon, USA, Membership Program this season -- a year-round IronPigs experience pass featuring numerous new amenities such as savings on parking at games and at the Majestic Clubhouse Store at Coca-Cola Park, on-field VIP access to watch batting practice, access to an annual holiday party, an invitation to an exclusive player and coaches photo session and more. For more information, visit ironpigsbaseball.com or call (610) 841-PIGS (7447). Memberships and group outings are on sale now.
The 2017 IronPigs baseball season is presented by Capital BlueCross.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.