Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Shhh! Bulls Bats Sleeping!

Season: 73-44; Remaining Home Games: 12
Wrap, Box, Herald-Sun

As regular readers will know, there’s a lot I don’t understand/know about baseball. So I’m hoping someone will explain to me why Matt Buschmann took the loss in last night’s game. He only gave up one run, the Bulls lost 4-2, so how come Cory Wade didn’t take the loss since the third Red Wings’ run came on his watch?

Something that has worried me a bit these last weeks almost came true last night. As obsessive watchers of the Durham Bulls roster will know, they’ve been playing with only 11 position players for quite a while now. That means that there’s only two players on the bench. In the 9th inning Leslie Anderson singled in the second run and things were looking up, hopes were up, and Evan Frey came in to run for him. Then Shelley Duncan reached first on a error, but was limping when he pulled up (more worries there). The bases were loaded and the last man on the bench, Mike Fontenot, came in. Bases loaded. Just what might have happened next?

As it turned out, Jesus Flores smacked one right to 3B, and the third baseman stepped on the bag for the last out. But what if … ?

And now they are down to ten position players with the Jason Bourgeois call up. If Duncan is hurt they are down to 9. There is surely going to be a roster move or two today ... or maybe just Craig Albernaz will come off the DL. Or I wonder if any of those pitchers have outfield gloves?

Another mystery: How does a guy with a 6-11 record and an ERA of 4.68 in AA ball darn near no-hit the best hitting team in the International League in his AAA debut? That’s what Rochester’s Pat Dean did last night. More credit to him. This is a surprisingly good team that’s going to be fun to watch over the next couple of days. Here’s hoping the Bulls figure the pitchers out.

The Bulls got a couple of freebies from Rochester’s bad base running last night. Two Red Wings were picked off and two were thrown out at the plate (Bourgeois and Kiermaier showing their arms and accuracy, Flores showing his toughness, Buschmann showing a nice pickoff move).

Outside the game —
  • Playoff tickets are on sale. A playoff game at the DBAP is a wonderful experience for fans. Typically the crowds are fairly small and the games are essentially matchups between which system has the best players coming up from AA, the best managing/coaching crew, and have hung on to key players from September callups. The opening series will match the South Division against the West Division, with the South hosting. That implies games at the DBAP Sep 4 and 5 and possibly a final round Sep 10-11.
  • A brief chat with Scott Strickland last night reminded me of this item in George Habel’s blog from several days ago and Scott’s photo below. As Habel noted, some folks show off their ultrasounds, Scott is showing off the two acres (!) of turf that’s growing and to be installed at the DBAP this winter. Cute kids, ain’t they? Funny name, though … Tifway 419 Bermuda?


  1. Not sure if you're joking on the loss comment, but a pitcher takes a loss if they give up the lead and then the other team goes on to win regardless of how many runs were scored thereafter.

  2. Sad to say, I wasn't joking. I am late to this obsession of closely watching baseball and I have the occasional lacunae. I really didn't know the "give up the lead" condition. Makes sense. Just don't think I've noticed it before.

    On the other hand, I have deeply studied the official rulebook regarding balks and have come to the firm conclusion that a balk is whatever the ump says it is:)

  3. I should say gives up the lead last btw. If the Bulls had rallied, gone ahead and then another pitcher gave up the go ahead runs, then they'd take the loss.