[Game recap provided by Bulls Matt DeMargel.]
Durham, NC - The Bulls five-game win streak came to an end Saturday night with a 11-4 loss at the hands of Gwinnett. Ryan Shealy had a double and a homer on the night for the Bulls, but the G-Braves bats pounded out 18 hits to take command and hand Bulls starter Richard De Los Santos his third loss of the season.
Durham’s offense provided an early advantage, scoring two in the first against Braves starter Todd Redmond. Desmond Jennings singled with one out and Matt Joyce followed with a walk. Dan Johnson stepped to the plate and laced a double into the gap to score Jennings, and an errant relay throw allowed Joyce to scamper home with the second run.
The lead held until the third inning, when Gwinnett stormed back to take a 4-2 advantage. The frame started with a throwing error by shortstop Angel Chavez, the first Bulls error since May 30, ending their errorless streak at 12 games which was their longest such streak this season. Gwinnett took advantage as Clint Sammons, Wes Timmons and Barbaro Canizares would have RBI singles in the inning to take the lead.
After striking out the side in the fourth, De Los Santos ran into trouble again in the fifth. Three straight doubles by Timmons, Freddie Freeman and Canizares pushed across two more runs for the Braves.
In the sixth, De Los Santos allowed another run before leaving with the bases loaded. Brian Baker came on for the Bulls, but fared no better as Canizares laced a bases-clearing double to give the Braves their second four-run frame of the game and extend their lead to 10-2.
Shealy added a solo homer for the Bulls in the bottom of the sixth inning, his tenth of the season. He becomes the third Bull to hit 10 or more homers on the season, the only team in the International League with three players over 10 homers. They would add their final run in the ninth on a bases loaded walk by Jennings.
The loss drops Durham to 38-25 on the season, but they still hold a 9.5 game advantage over Gwinnett for the top spot in the South Division.
The two teams will do battle again tomorrow as the Bulls wrap up their six-game home stand before traveling to Gwinnett for the final two games of the series. LHP Carlos Hernandez (5-3, 2.90) takes on Braves LHP Jose Ortegano (2-1, 4.55), game time is set for 5:05 p.m.