[Via email from the Durham Bulls Director of Media Relations Matt DeMargel.]
With a quality start from Durham pitcher Andy Sonnanstine and three Bulls’ homers, Durham outslugged Charlotte 8-6 in its first game back home Thursday night at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park.
The Bulls jumped on the board first in the bottom of the first with a Justin Ruggiano single which was misplayed by Charlotte right fielder Justin Kroeger scoring both Durham runners.
Durham’s lead was doubled to 4-0 in the third with a two-run blast from Matt Joyce over the wall in right off Knights’ pitcher Jeff Marquez.
Charlotte got on the board on the fourth with a sacrifice fly from Daryle Ward. The Bulls answered right back in their half of the inning with a three-run homer from Jon Weber, making the score 7-1.
After both teams plated runs in the fifth with the Bulls’ coming off a Chris Richard solo shot, Charlotte was able to put together a set of runs in the seventh. A three-run bomb from Miguel Negron off Bulls reliever Jorge Julio cut Durham’s lead to 8-5.
Charlotte would only be able to add one more run, a ninth inning solo shot from Cole Armonstrong off Bulls closer Dale Thayer, as Durham held on for a 8-6 victory.
The win made six straight for the Bulls, who have won eight for their last 11. It also marks the sixth straight game in which the Bulls have gone deep. They have now hit 20 homers in their last nine games.
Sonnanstine, making his first appearance in a Bulls’ uniform after being optioned from Tampa Bay, picked up the win after six quality innings in which he allowed two runs on seven hits with one walk and three strikeouts.
The Bulls take on the Knights again on Friday, July 3rd at 7:05 PM at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Tickets are available at www.durhambulls.com or by phone at (919) 956-BULL.