August 26, 2008 - International League (IL) - Indianapolis Indians
DURHAM, N.C. -- After a Norfolk cancelation earlier in the day clinched the south division title and a playoff berth, Durham celebrated with a 3-2 victory over Indianapolis on Tuesday evening at Durham Bulls Athletic Park.
The Bulls improve to 71-67 on the season and 32-38 at home, while the Indians fall to 65-73 overall and 30-40 on the road. Even with the Durham victory, Indianapolis still finishes with a 5-3 series advantage over the Bulls this season.
DH Dan Johnson provided the heroics for Bulls launching the eventual game-winning solo home run in the eighth inning. The crushing blow was Johnson\'s 24th of the season and propelled the Bulls to a series split with the Indians.
C Mike DiFelice provided the early offensive fire power for Durham with a two-run single in the fourth inning. The base knock plated 3B Chris Nowak and 2B Elliot Johnson, who led off the frame with back-to-back base hits of their own.
Bulls\' pitchers tied an Indians opponent season high with 14 strikeouts, allowing just one earned run on five total hits.
Durham starter Wade Davis (6.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 8 SO) held Indianapolis scoreless over six innings, but did not figure in the decision, as reliever Jeremy Cummings (3.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 SO) picked up the victory to improve to 8-3 on the season.
Nowak (2-for-4, 1 R) and Elliot Johnson (2-for-3, 1 R) turned in multi-hit performances for the Bulls, while DiFelice (1-for-4, 2 RBI) recorded the games only multi-RBI effort.
DH Ryan Mulhern led the Indians\' offensive attack going 1-for-2 with two walks and launching a solo long ball to left-center in seventh inning. The homer was the 12th on the season for Mulhern and shut down the Bulls shut out hopes after six innings.
The Tribe would tie the game at two in the eighth inning when 1B Jason Delaney scored on a Durham error after C Carlos Maldonado roped a double to left.
However, Indianapolis reliever Marino Salas (1.0 IP, 1 H , 1 ER, 1 R, 1 BB, 0 SO) surrendered the lead in the bottom of the eighth and was pinned with the loss to drop to 4-4 on the season.
Indians starter Mike Thompson (5.0 IP, 8 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 3 SO) escaped several early jams and kept the Tribe in the ball game, but did not figure in the final decision.
Indianapolis RHP Evan Meek (2.0 IP, 1 SO) continued his dominance out of the bullpen with two perfect innings of work. Meek has now posted a 1.22 ERA (5 ER in 37.0 IP) over his last 19 relief appearances for the Tribe.
It was a tough day at the plate as every Indians starter struck out at least once and none were able to collect multiple hits.
Indianapolis returns to Victory Field on Wednesday for their final home series of the season against Louisville. Bats LHP Bobby Livingston and Indians RHP Daniel McCutchen are the probables for the series opener at 7 p.m.
Wednesday is Wheeler Mission Night where coupons for two dollars off regular ticket prices will be available at participating Steak n Shake locations to benefit Wheeler Mission. The Indians will also donate two dollars to Wheeler Mission for each coupon redeemed.
The contest will be carried by WXLW-950 AM and www.IndyIndians.com with Howard Kellman and Scott McCauley. The pre-game show begins at 6:40 p.m.