Duncan, Buschmann give Bulls split with Braves
Teams often have to find a way to win on the road. In the case of the Durham Bulls, ways to win seem to find them.
Shelly Duncan drove in the go-ahead run in the seventh inning, but Gwinnett third baseman Joe Leonard’s fourth, fifth and sixth errors of the season — tallying five in two nights — helped the Bulls take a 5-4 victory Friday night at Coolray Field.
Durham (78-49), which had only one hit through four innnigs, benefitted from a strong 6.1 innings by starter Matt Buschmann (7-1), who gave up five hits, four runs (two earned) while striking out three.
Kirby Yates pitched the ninth inning to earn his 17th save of the season, as the Bulls cut their magic number for winning the South Division title to six. Norfolk took a 5-4 win over Toledo to remain in contention.
Gwinnett took the lead in the second on a two-out, two-run single to right by Matt Pagnozzi.
The Bulls didn’t get their second hit until a ground-rule double by Evan Frey with one out in the fifth, and he was stranded at third when Kevin Kiermaier was called out on strikes.
Durham finally got on the board in the sixth, as Tim Beckham and Cole Figueroa walked to start the rally. Chris Gimenez beat out a bunt single, and Beckham scored on a throwing error by Gwinnett pitcher Cody Martin.
Leonard committed his second error on a bunt attempt by Leslie Anderson, allowing Figueroa to score and Gimenez to take third. Mike Fontenot walked to fill the bases, and a grounder by Frey drove in Gimenez for a 3-2 lead by the Bulls.
In the bottom of the inning, Alden Carrithers reached on a error and Ernesto Mejia walked to set up an RBI groundout by Stefan Gartrell. Leonard singled to plate Mejia for a 4-3 but was out when he tried to take second on the play.
The Bulls went ahead to stay in the seventh, as Leonard’s third error of the game allow Beckham to reach second. A wild pitch by reliever Mark Lamm allowed Beckham to score and tie the game. After Figueroa and Gimenez walked, Duncan singled to left to drive in Figueroa to put the Bulls in control.
NOTES — The win allowed the Bulls to split the four-game series before heading to Charlotte for a three-game set beginning today. ... Durham will have J.D. Martin (14-4, 2.77 ERA) on the mound against the Knights Nick McCully (2-2, 6.00). Jake Odorizzi (8-5, 3.70) is scheduled to pitch for the Bulls on Sunday against Erik Johnson (2-1, 1.93).
Bulls 5, Braves 4
Kiermaier cf|4|0|0|0|Constanza lf|3|0|0|0
Beckham ss|4|2|0|0|Cunningham cf|4|0|0|0
Figueroa 3b|2|2|1|0|Carrithers 2b|4|1|1|0
Gimenez lf|3|1|1|0|Mejia 1b|3|1|0|0
Anderson dh|5|0|0|1|Boggs rf|2|1|1|0
Duncan 1b|4|0|1|1|Gartrell dh|4|1|2|1
Fontenot 2b|3|0|0|0|Leonard 3b|2|0|1|1
Frey rf|3|0|1|1|Pagnozzi c|3|0|1|2
Flores c|4|0|0|0|Kazmar ss|4|0|0|0
E—Figueroa, Leonard 3, Martin. DP—Durham 1, Gwinnett 1. LOB—Durham 10, Gwinnett 5. 2B—Frey, Gartrell. S—Boggs, Leonard. SB—Frey 2 (6).
Buschmann (W, 7-1)|6.1|5|4|2|4|3
Beliveau (H, 8)|1.0|0|0|0|0|2
Geltz (H, 9)|0.2|0|0|0|0|1
Yates (S, 17)|1.0|1|0|0|0|1
Beimel (BS, 3)|1.1|0|0|0|1|0
Lamm (BS, 1)(L, 2-2)|0.2|1|2|0|2|0
Martin pitched to 3 batters in the 6th.
WP—Lamm. HBP—Pagnozzi (by Buschmann). Umpires—HP, Jon Byrne; 1B, Gabe Morales; 2B, Clint Fagan; 3B, Doug Vines. T—3:27. A—6,972.