Fans at the DBAP got just the type of game expected when the top two teams in the league meet.
Durham and Scranton/Wilkes-Barre had a heavyweight fight in front of the 9,470 fans, going extra innings for the second straight night. Johnny Field made it worth the wait, scoring the only run of the game to give the Bulls a 1-0 victory.
The walk-off by Field was the third this season for Durham. On a night when hits were hard to come by, the first (and only) one for Field was the one that set off the wild celebration. With Kean Wong on third, Field hit a line drive to lead the Bulls (72-45) to a huge win over the league leading RailRiders.
“We had a couple of bases open so I didn’t really expect him to give me a fastball,” Field said.
With a 2-1 count, Joe Mantiply threw a curveball that Field jumped on and sent it to left field.
“It was right down the line,” Field said.
Durham had a chance to get on the board early in the game. In the bottom of the third the Bulls had two runners on with one out, but a double-play ended any hopes of a run. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (75-42) wasn’t so lucky. The RailRiders only got two hits through the first nine innings, never getting more than one runner on base. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre only got four batters up to bat three times in nine innings, as Durham’s defense was spectacular. The offense, however, struggled against RailRiders’ pitcher Domingo German, who gave up just three hits in his six innings of work.
“That was a hard fought game,” Field said. “Both teams pitched their (tails) off. We couldn’t get anything going offensively and our pitchers went out there and dominated.”
Mike Broadway, who arrived in Durham from Montgomery sometime Wednesday night, got the start, going two innings, striking out three. Diego Castillo (2.0IP, 1H, 3K) got the win. On a bullpen night, Durham manager Jared Sandberg tipped his hat to his staff and the job they did, holding the RailRiders to three hits.
“The pitchers were outstanding today to say the least,” Sandberg said. “When they are all in short stints like that it helps them pitched their game. They were all did an incredible job.”
The two teams continue their four-game series Friday at 7:05 p.m. Ryan Yarbrough (12-5) starts for the Bulls, while Chance Adams (8-3) gets the start for the the RailRiders.