LAWRENCEVILLE -- As he walked off the mound, the visiting pitcher drew an ovation.
Jair Jurrjens, pitching now for the Class AAA affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles, wasn't making his first visiting start at Coolray Field, but he pitched a solid 6 innings against his former organization, allowing just one run off nine hits with two strikeouts. The Tides held on for their starter, winning 4-3.
In a rare happening, Jurrjens took the win over former Atlanta Braves teammate Brandon Beachy who allowed two runs over his three rehab innings.
"I saw (Jurrjens) out here yesterday, we got to joke around a little bit. It's not that strange," Beachy said. "It looks like J.J. out there, still chucking it, still looks good."
It was the first win in his second appearance against the G-Braves for Jurrjens who didn't factor in the decision at Coolray Field on April 16.
Gwinnett scored its only run off Jurrjens on an RBI single by Phil Gosselin in the second, but struggled all night with runners on base. Gosselin's hit scored Alden Carrithers who led the inning off with a double and finished the game 3-for-4, reaching on an error in his other at-bat. The G-Braves out-hit Norfolk 13-9. For the game, they stranded 11 runners, including eight put on base by the former major league all-star Jurrjens. They were 2-for-14 with runners in scoring position.
Down 2-1 after Beachy's three innings, the G-Braves, usual starter Omar Poveda relieved Beachy and after giving up a home run to the first batter he faced, turned in a solid six innings. The right hander allowed two run off six hits, he struck out two and walked one.
"Pitching kept us in the game," manager Randy Ready said.
A lead-off blast in the eighth by Ernesto Mejia made it 4-2 and Luis Nunez cut the deficit to 4-3 with a sacrifice fly to scored Stefan Gartrell later in the inning. The homer was Mejia team-leading 22nd of the season for the recently announced home run derby participant in the Triple-A All-Star Game. With two outs in the inning, Matt Pagnozzi, the G-Braves No. 9 batter, drew a walk in a 10-pitch at-bat to put two runners on base. Jose Constanza struck out to end the inning.
In the ninth, Todd Cunningham bunted his way on to start the inning on a dribble down the third base line that just stayed fair. It was the second hit of the game for Cunningham.
Brandon Boggs sacrificed Cunningham to second and Mejia grounded out to advance him to third. But with two outs former G-Braves closer Jair Asencio struck out Gartrell, who was 3-for-5 with two doubles in the game, for his 20th save of the season.
"We had them on the ropes numerous times and we didn't cash in," Ready said.