Season: 67-66; Home Stand: 1-0
Games Remaining: 11; Home Games:8
The Bulls kept their streak alive at the DBAP last night. Remarkable.
Both managers pushed their luck, though. Jared Sandberg got away with it. The Knights’ manager, Joel Skinner, did not. The question both managers faced was how long to leave a struggling pitcher in the game. The Bulls Scott Diamond got out of a bases loaded situation in the 4th inning with a lineout to left field. However, in a bases-loaded no-outs situation in the next inning, he got the first out on a popup, his second out on another popup, but the next batter singled and two runs scored. By that time Diamond had faced 27 batters and thrown 90+ pitches. The Bulls were down 3-2 going into the 6th.
Over on the Charlotte side their pitcher, Kyle Drabeck, went into the 7th inning, but a walk and two singles later he faced the same situation, bases-loaded, no-outs. He wild-pitched in a run, got a K, but then a two-run single by Luke Maile put the Bulls ahead 5-4. He left the game at 27 batters and 104 pitches.
Neither starting pitcher had stellar Game Scores: Diamond’s was 38, Drabeck’s was 40.
But the Bulls' relief crew only gave up one hit. Jim Miller was particularly impressive. I don’t think I’ve seen him more focused on each pitch this year. Two K’s and a pop-up and he got the save
Kudos to Luke Maile for his game-winning single in the 7th and to Mikie Mahtook for his two-run double in the 3rd.
Outside the game —
- J.P. Arencibia started at catcher for the Rays last night and Joey Butler, who helped win the last two games for the Bulls, joined him in the lineup as the DH. The two of them made the difference in the Rays win before just 9,000 fans in St. Petersburg (the Bulls had almost 8,000 in Durham). Arencibia drove in run with a sac fly. Butler hit a game-tying RBI and then scored the winning run on a wild pitch.
- Along with Butler leaving, José Dominguez is back. He passed through waivers. I didn’t notice him in the bullpen last night, but he was probably there.
Norfolk, on the other hand, has lost their last four games and is only ahead of Gwinnett (who they are now playing) by two games.
Here's the pattern since mid-season (game 73).