Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Dull, Dull, Dull

Game 135, Monday, August 30, DBAP
Gwinnett Braves (Atlanta) 2, Durham Bulls (Tampa Bay) 1
Season: 77-58; Home Stand: 3-5; Home Games Remaining: 1
Wrap, Box, Herald-Sun, Examiner, Indy Week

This has been a dispiriting week for this Bulls fan: rain in buckets and not very good baseball. I don't think I'm alone. For example, in the links above the Bulls Wrap summarized the game in just 156 words. Mike Potter on Examiner managed 449 words, but most of them were quotes. Steve Wiseman at the Herald-Sun did a workman 583. Even Adam Sobsey at Indy Week, who usually puts together essays in the 5,000 word range, could only find 3,000 and much of that wasn't on the game.

In a sentence, the Bulls were outpitched. Their one run was scored in a bases-loaded, ball bounced past the catcher, situation. Bulls batters struck out 13 times. Not a season record (that would be 14 last May 21st), but close.

Matt Torres did not have his best day, but if the Bulls had been hitting the two runs he let in would not have mattered much.

From a fan's point of view, three nice plays helped brighten the dullness of the evening. A nifty Brandon Guyer to Ray Olmedo to Robison Chirinos at the plate saved a run in the 3rd (OK, looked to me like the runner beat the tag, but the ump was on the other side of the play). A routine, but still smart, play by first baseman (!) Stephen Vogt to go home after grabbing a bases-loaded grounder saved a run when the double play was uncertain. And left fielder Russ Canzler made a terrific running grab of a line drive in the 8th.

Well, there's my 280 or so words on the game. I can't find anything else worth saying.
* * * * *

The Bulls have been very coy about announcing who will pitch in the final home game of the year tonight. I was thinking that it meant that Dirk Hayhurst was about to return to the rotation. I was wrong. He was released yesterday. I'll let him tell his own story over at his blog.

Speaking for myself, I enjoyed watching Mr. Hayhurst pitch this year. I've worried about his elbow. I was fascinated by a couple of the interviews he's done. I'm impressed with his skill as a photographer. I look forward to reading his next book and hope that I enjoy it as much as I did The Bullpen Gospels. Good luck. Here's hoping that he finds his way back to baseball, if that's what he wants to do. If not, have a great life.

* * * * *

Speculation on September call-ups is circulating. I'll take my shot at that later today. Commentary welcome.


  1. Dan Johnson at third base did not seem like a
    match made in heaven.

  2. Agree. Not sure why Charlie playing DJ there the last couple of games. Mayora must be OK since he was pinch-running. Maybe thinking he'd give him more ABs in hopes of a call-up? He's OK at third, but no better than Mayora or Furmaniak. But I didn't want to get into any ranting.