Thursday, June 23, 2016

Big Day at Bat; Shaffer?

Game 74, Wednesday, June 22, DBAP
Charlotte Knights: 4
Durham Bulls: 6
Season: 33-41; Home Stand: 3-0
Wrap, Box, Herald-Sun

Game Score: Schultz 50; Season Avg 54 (15 Starts, 77.1 innings)
Tm OPS: Game 1.018; Season .649
Tm wOBA: Game .435, Season .293

A big day at bat for the Bulls, as the stats show. But let's get to what matters to Bulls fans first — Richie Shaffer. From a distance (We watched the game on TV) it looked like a "face plant" as he sprawled to his left reaching for a ground ball. After he finally stood up trainer was busy checking out his upper jaw. Today's Herald-Sun is the only source we have on outcome:
The Bulls lost third baseman Richie Shaffer in the sixth inning after he landed hard while diving for a ground ball. He was able to walk off the field. Sandberg speculated that Shaffer may have injured his neck or upper back.
Assuming tradition followed, any update is more likely to come from Tampa Bay than local sources, although perhaps from the radio lead-in to today's game.

Shaffer's departure led to a reshuffle of folks on the field including bringing in Mayo Acosta to catch. We like Acosta and we could not be more happy to report that he got his first hit of the year after 32 at-bats.

Meanwhile, Luke Maile got his first home run of the year, Jake Goebbert got his 6th (plus a sac fly), and Jayron Varona got his 8th.

Jamie Schultz was much improved from his last two starts, which were not very good at all. In fact, all of the Bulls pitchers kept all the Knights in check — except for former Bull and Smithfield High School product Jerry Sands. Sands hit two 2-run homers. Essentially telling the White Sox they shouldn't have DFA'd him. (Ironically, he was DFA'd to make room for another former Bull James Shields.)

If the name of the pitcher getting the win, Dana Eveland, is new to you, that's because he's new to the Bulls. It was his first appearance in a Bulls uniform. "Well-traveled" would be an understatement describing the 32-year-old's career. He has played for 10 different major league teams and 9 different AAA teams. Experience could be a good thing, though. I'd guess it depends on how he works out in the clubhouse.

Outside the Game —
  • Gonna be a bit warmish tonight. Predicting 97° for game time.

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