Sunday, September 12, 2010

Bulls Win Game 5 — On To Columbus!

Durham Bulls 4, Louisville Bats 2

Wrap, Box

We are sure that there is not an official MVP award for the first round of the playoffs. So we are starting one. Here it is:

Watching Durham Bulls Baseball
Most Valuable Player Award
First Round
International League Governors' Cup

J. J. Furmaniak

Let's first talk about tonight. JJ's 5th inning home run was just crucial. It broke a tie and broke the Bats' hearts. The running grab of Griffin's looper into right, a very nice play, was the final out of the game.

And then there was Saturday night — 3 walks and a triple with two runs scored. And Friday night — three singles, a walk, and a run scored. We could not have asked more of a lead off batter and second baseman. Thank you! (And, if you don't mind, please let me know if you prefer J.J. or JJ as a first name.)

The rest of the game was simply first rate baseball.

Bobby Livingston was terrific through his first four innings. He got in a bit of trouble in the 5th. He almost got out of it, but ended up giving up a couple of runs and left with the game tied. Furmaniak's homer in the bottom of the 5th gave him the win.

Prior to that, in the 2nd, the Bats Jeremy Horst gave up two walks to Joe Dillon and Nevin Ashley and lived to regret it as they both scored on a Fernando Perez single that got by the left fielder.

Livingston left in the 6th for Joe Bateman who did a brilliant job into the 8th when Charlie Montoyo went for Winston Abreu to pitch to the Bats's Daniel Dorn with two outs and a runner on second. We "experts" in the stands were second-guessing Montoyo on this choice since Dorn is left handed and Jake McGee or R.J. Swindle were available. Charlie knew something we didn't (I sure hope so), because Winston struck out Dorn to finish the 8th.

Meanwhile the Bulls picked up a 4th run on a Leslie Anderson double that was followed by an Angel Chavez double.

Overall, this series was a close run thing. We stand by our original analysis that the bullpen and veteran ballplayers would make the difference, and they did.

Most of all, it was great was it to be in the stands when the Bulls won this one. In previous years the wins have been on the road. This time we got to whistle and clap and cheer and boy that was nice.

Coming to the game I promised myself that tomorrow night I would watch either Major League (Cleveland Indians, parent club of the Clippers) or Bull Durham. It will be Major League.

Numbers and analysis regarding the Clippers some time tomorrow. In the meantime, let's just revel in the win.

Go Bulls!


  1. Great Game

    That game ending catch by Furmaniak was incredible.

    Looking forward to Thursday

  2. It didn't make a difference, but J.J. Furmaniak's 9th inning at bat on Friday night showed what he was about in this series. The Bulls were only one run down with two outs--he had something like a 10-pitch at bat, finally working the walk. Then he stole second. The Bulls couldn't get him home, but he gave the team a chance with clutch play.

  3. Exactly so. He has been simply terrific, especially these last three games at home. And you're right, that at bat on Friday was a great example of him keeping his focus.

  4. Haven't you learned not to 2nd guess Charlie yet? On the Indy week blog it says that I called to congratulate him....not true...I was yelling at him that he was supposed to lose and come home. I have the only kids in the world who are hoping for a sweep by the OTHER team.

  5. You know, you're right. I should quit even trying. But that's part of the fun being a fan ... seeing if you can second guess the manager.

    I also hope that you and the children don't mind too much if Charlie sticks around for at least three more games (enough to beat Columbus) and then a couple more days after that for a trip to Oklahoma City.

  6. I guess part of being a manager is dealing with a world full of people who think they know how to do your job better than you do.

  7. The kids could care less, they're used to it. BUT as the person who takes care of the 2 kids (especially Alex) I just want him to come home and let me take a nap lol