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Updated: April 20, 2011
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Copyright © 1997-2011
Grand Slam/Marco Stoovelaar

Compiled and Copyright © 1997-2011 by Marco Stoovelaar

Another loss for Rick van den Hurk
NORFOLK, Virginia (USA) - Dutch pitcher Rick van den Hurk on Wednesday-evening had his longest outing of the season, but suffered his third loss, as the Norfolk Tides were beaten 8-4 by the Gwinnett Braves (Atlanta Braves).

Again, there was no match-up between Van den Hurk and Antillian pitcher Jair Jurrjens, who started the season for Gwinnett on a rebab assignment. On April 11, Jurrjens threw six innings (2 strikeouts, 4 hits) against Norfolk and was the winning pitcher, but Van den Hurk then didn't pitch. A match-up between the two was not possible today, as Jurrjens was activated from the 15-day Disabled List by the Atlanta Braves on Saturday and started the same night against the New York Mets. Jurrjens did great, threw seven innings in which he gave up only tow basehits and struckout four, becoming the winning pitcher in a 4-0 shutout. For Jurrjens, this was his first start since September 14 of last year. He then missed the final two weeks on the 2010 season as he was sidelined with a torn meniscus in his right knee. This season, he missed the first two weeks with a strained right oblique muscle and therefore started in the Triple-A team of the Braves.

In the first inning, Van den Hurk started with two quick outs. But then, he didn't get the calls from Home Plate Umpire Jeff Gosney and walked Ed Lucas. Hereafter, Diory Hernandez homered to give the Braves a 2-0 lead.

In the home of the first, Norfolk came alongside immediately. With one out, Ryan Adams reached on an error, then Brandon Snyder doubled. A grounder by Nolan Reimold and double by Josh Bell then tied the score off Colombian Braves-starter Julio Teheran, who last season pitched on the Single-A/Double-A level.

After giving up the two runs in the first inning, Van den Hurk didn't ran into problems in the second at bat. He struckout the first two batters, then ended with a grounder. In the third inning, Van den Hurk retired the side again and added a strikeout, but then gave up two runs in the fourth at bat. With one out, Van den Hurk gave up singles to Diory Hernandez and Joe Mather. The two then advanced when the next batter flied out into foul territory and scored on a following single by Wilkin Ramirez to make it 4-2.

The fifth Braves-run followed in the fifth inning, again with two outs. Van den Hurk then struckout Jordan Schafer, but the third strike was a wild pitch. Schafer then stole second base and scored on a double by Jose Constanza.

After retiring the side again in the sixth inning, Van den Hurk gave up a lead-off homerun to Wilkin Ramirez in the seventh inning, which was followed by a line drive single by Shawn Bowman. After Pitching Coach Mike Griffin had a meeting with Van den Hurk, the righthander gave up a single to J.C. Boscan. That marked the end for Van den Hurk, as Manager Gary Allenson came out of the dug-out to bring in reliever Mark Hendrickson. But the inning wasn't over yet. After the next batter grounded out, Hendrickson gave up two RBI-singles that brought in the two runners that Van den Hurk left, meaning he was credited with eight earned runs.

Rick van den Hurk threw three innings in his first game of the season, then 5 1/3 in his next start, before being relieved with no outs in the seventh tonight.

(April 20)

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