Charlotte comes back with late 2-run HR
The Bulls broke out of a batting slump, only to have their bullpen fail them, Saturday at the DBAP.
After scoring just one run in the first 17 innings of the current homestand, Durham erased a 3-0 deficit with four seven inning runs. The rally was wasted, however, when closer Josh Lueke allowed a two-run ninth inning home run, giving Charlotte a 6-5 win in a wild game.
“When your closer doesn’t have it, that’s what happens,” Bulls manager Charlie Montoyo said.
Protecting a two-run Bulls lead, Lueke got two quick strikes on Matt Davidson to start the ninth, then hit him on the hand. Catcher Miguel Gonzalez followed with an RBI double.
Jared Mitchell then drove a 3-1 pitch from Lueke into deep right field for his seventh homer of the year, giving Charlotte the lead to stay.
It was Lueke’s third blown save of the year and first since since July 23, snapping a string of four straight saves. He took the loss, dropping to 0-1, 3.68.
“I’m going to call it bad luck,” Montoyo said of his closer’s outing. “He didn’t make the pitches and he paid for it.”
After scoring just one run in 11 innings in Friday’s win over Charlotte, the Bulls managed just three hits in the first six innings. The bottom half of the Bulls order awakened in the seventh, however.
Mayo Acosta singled with the bases loaded. Nick Franklin followed with an RBI grounder, and, after a wild pitch tied the game, Mikie Mahtook gave the Bulls the lead with a sharp single to left.
The rally was cut short when left fielder Marcus Semien threw out Wil Myers at the plate as he tried to score on Mahtook’s hit as well.
Myers continued his MLB injury rehab, going one-for-three with two walks. He started in left field at the request of parent club Tampa Bay, just the seventh time in his career that he’s played the position. Myers’ last game in left was on August 10, 2011 for Double-A Northwest Arkansas, 366 games ago.
The reigning A.L. Rookie of the Year had an up and down night in front of the DBAP’s Blue Monster. He played a ball off the wall in the fourth inning and made an impressive throw to third base, cutting down Charlotte’s Micah Johnson. However he struggled with the lights, getting charged with one error and allowing two other catchable balls to fall for doubles.
“He misplayed a couple of balls and cost us a few runs,” Montoyo said.
Donnie Veal was on the mound for the Bulls seventh inning rally, blowing his seventh save of the year, but Charlotte’s ninth inning rally made him a winner, moving him to 4-5, 5.86. Taylor Thompson (2.38) loaded the bases in the ninth but struck out Jeremy Moore and Tim Beckham to earn his seventh save.
Norfolk won 2-0 over Gwinnett, so Durham’s magic number remained at 10. Any combination of 10 Bulls wins and Tides losses over the final 16 games will clinch the Bulls second straight I.L. South Division title.
Charlotte Knights (57-72) 6, Durham Bulls (66-62) 5
August 16, 2014
|Mitchell, J, CF||5||2||3||3||0||0||0||.214|
|Johnson, Mica, 2B||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.275|
|Taylor, M, RF||3||0||0||0||1||1||2||.325|
|Gonzalez, M, C||4||2||3||1||0||0||0||.256|
|Sanchez, C, SS||4||0||0||0||0||1||3||.298|
|Thompson, Ta, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|1-Ran for Johnson, Mica in the 4th.|
2B: Gonzalez, M 2 (5, Colome, Lueke), Mitchell, J (6, Colome).
HR: Mitchell, J (7, 9th inning off Lueke, 1 on, 1 out).
TB: Gonzalez, M 5; Wilkins; Mitchell, J 7; Jirschele; Semien 2.
RBI: Wilkins (77), Mitchell, J 3 (22), Jirschele (3), Gonzalez, M (7).
2-out RBI: Wilkins; Mitchell, J; Jirschele.
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Taylor, M; Sanchez, C; Tuiasosopo.
SAC: Johnson, Mica.
Team RISP: 4-for-10.
Team LOB: 6.
SB: Semien (4, 2nd base off Colome/Acosta, M).
Outfield assists: Semien (Myers at home).
|Figueroa, C, 3B||4||0||1||0||1||0||2||.298|
|Beckham, T, DH||5||1||2||0||0||1||5||.429|
|Lee, H, SS||4||1||1||0||0||0||1||.206|
|Acosta, M, C||4||1||1||1||0||2||1||.136|
2B: Mahtook (30, Doran), Myers (1, Doran), Beckham, T (1, Veal).
HR: Moore (8, 8th inning off Veal, 0 on, 0 out).
TB: Myers 2; Moore 4; Figueroa, C; Acosta, M; Lee, H; Beckham, T 3; Franklin; Mahtook 3.
RBI: Acosta, M (5), Franklin (5), Mahtook (58), Moore (28).
2-out RBI: Mahtook.
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Mahtook 2; Beckham, T 3; Acosta, M.
Team RISP: 3-for-13.
Team LOB: 10.
SB: Mahtook (16, 3rd base off Doran/Gonzalez, M).
E: Franklin (1, fielding), Myers (1, fielding).
Outfield assists: Myers (Jirschele at 3rd base).
|Veal (BS, 7)(W, 4-5)||1.2||3||1||1||2||1||1||5.86|
|Thompson, Ta (S, 7)||1.0||1||0||0||2||3||0||2.38|
|Lueke (BS, 3)(L, 0-1)||1.0||2||3||3||0||0||1||3.68|
WP: Doran, Veal.
IBB: Myers (by Veal).
HBP: Davidson (by Lueke).
Pitches-strikes: Doran 92-52, Veal 29-13, Thompson, Ta 31-16, Colome 99-65, Liberatore 19-13, Lueke 20-15.
Groundouts-flyouts: Doran 8-3, Veal 2-1, Thompson, Ta 0-0, Colome 9-4, Liberatore 0-1, Lueke 2-1.
Batters faced: Doran 27, Veal 9, Thompson, Ta 6, Colome 29, Liberatore 4, Lueke 6.
Inherited runners-scored: Veal 3-3, Liberatore 1-0.
Umpires: HP: Derek Mollica. 1B: Jeff Gosney. 3B: Jon Byrne.
Weather: 86 degrees, partly cloudy.
Wind: 3 mph, Out to LF.
Venue: Durham Bulls Athletic Park.
August 16, 2014
Compiled by MLB Advanced Media