Norfolk’s 26 Runs To Beat Charlotte Most In International League In Years


Image credit: Heston Kjerstad (Brian Westerholt/Four Seam Images)

With still a day to go until the rest of the full-season minor leagues get going, we’ve already had two of the the wildest games we’ll see in minor league baseball.

In the Pacific Coast League, we saw a truly wild back-and-forth game where El Paso scored eight in the top of the ninth to take the lead, then allowed seven runs with two outs in the bottom of the ninth to barely hang on.

And now we’ve had Norfolk demolish Charlotte 26-11 in a game that saw Norfolk dominate in ways rarely seen in minor league baseball.

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In the 2020s, there have only been six games in the major leagues and full season minor league baseball where a team has scored 26 or more runs. It has happened only 20 times since 2006, which is about as far back as we can go with accurate game-by-game minor league data.

It hadn’t happened in Triple-A since 2019, when Round Rock beat Las Vegas by the same 26-11 score. It hadn’t happened in the International League since Buffalo beat Syracuse 27-9 in 2013. It has happened only 16 times in MLB history.

Norfolk had 64 total bases, thanks in part to seven home runs. The records on total bases for a team in a minor league game are even sketchier than those for game scores, but the only other game Baseball America could find in MiLB’s available statistics (2006-present) where a team had 64 total bases in a game was Triple-A Reno’s 25-8 win over Tacoma on May 20, 2019. Reno had 64 total bases that day, thanks in part to Yasmany Tomas’ four home runs.

On Wednesday for Norfolk, Kyle Stowers had three home runs and a double. Heston Kjerstad had five hits with two doubles and two home runs. He had 10 RBIs. Coby Mayo had five hits including a double and a triple. Jackson Holliday went 4-for-6 with five runs scored, two doubles, two walks and two RBIs. Not only did every Norfolk batter have a hit, all but one reached base three or more times, and all but two reached base four times.

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