[Via email from the Durham Bulls Director of Media Relations Matt DeMargel.]
With some timely hitting and a quality performance from starting pitcher James Houser, the Bulls won 4-1 over Toledo in their homestand finale Friday night at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park.
Houser posted 6 2/3 solid innings of work, allowing one run on five hits and three walks with six strikeouts to pick up the win and move to 3-1 on the season. His outing Friday marks his first quality start of the season and the Bulls’ third in as many days.
Durham got on the board first in the second inning with a sacrifice fly from John Jaso scoring Rays Sadler from third. They tacked on one more in the third with a Justin Ruggiano single to center scoring Henry Mateo from second to put the Bulls ahead 2-0.
Toledo was able to answer back with a one run in the sixth off Houser, his only run allowed all night. After allowing a double to right, Houser then proceeded to give up a single scoring the runner from second and bringing the Mud Hens within one run.
The Bulls added two more in the eighth with a single from Sadler and a fielding error by Toledo which allowed the runners from second and third to score. Sadler ended the day 1-3 with an RBI, run, and three of Durham’s four runs coming with him at bat.
Houser and the Bulls’ bullpen were able to keep Toledo at bay for the remainder of the night. Joe Bateman came in relief of Houser after two outs in the seventh and held the Mud Hens scoreless allowing only one hit until he was pulled after the eighth. Winston Abreu came in the ninth to close the game. He retired all three Toledo batters in order, including two by strikeouts, to pick up his team-high ninth save of the year.
With the win, Durham split their four-game series with Toledo, making it 10-straight series the Bulls have gone without a series loss. They ended their homestand taking five out of the eight games and now own a 21-10 record at the DBAP, the most home wins of any club in the International League.
The Bulls leave for Pawtucket Saturday to begin the first of a four game series with the Red Sox for the first half of their eight game road trip. Jason Cromer, Durham’s newest addition to the starting rotation from Montgomery, will take the mound with first pitch scheduled for 6:05 p.m.