Bulls Take Finals Opener
Bulls Take Finals Opener Mason Williams Posts Two Hits
Durham, N.C. - The SWB RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) fell behind early and dropped Game 1 of the Governors' Cup Finals to the host Durham Bulls (Tampa Bay Rays) on Tuesday night, 6-0. Three Durham hurlers combined to face just two over the minimum, twirling a three-hitter.
The RailRiders' best scoring chances came at the game's start with back-to-back game-opening hits from Mason Williams and Donovan Solano. Thereafter, Billy McKinney struck out swinging and Miguel Andujar bounced into an inning-ending double play.
In the home half of the first, four consecutive one-out singles, two on the infield, a Ronald Herrera (0-1) wild pitch, and a run-scoring groundout put Durham on top, 3-0. Patrick Leonard and Shane Peterson each registered an RBI in the frame. In the second, Justin Williams doubled Herrera's first pitch of the inning into the left-field corner and later scored on a two-out base hit by Kean Wong for a 4-0 margin.
The RailRiders would place just two other men on base all night. Garrett Cooper reached via a two-out bruise in the second and Mason Williams registered an infield single in the sixth before he was caught stealing.
Durham tacked on two insurance scores with Mike McHenry's two-out single in the sixth.
The win went to Bulls starter Ryan Yarbrough (1-0). He fired seven innings of three-hit ball, whiffing four. Mike Broadway and Jeff Ames each recorded a perfect inning thereafter.
The best-of-five Governors' Cup Finals continue at Durham Bulls Athletic Park on Wednesday at 6:35 p.m. SWB's Domingo German is slated to face fellow right-hander, Yonny Chirinos.
The RailRiders' first home game of the finals will be on Thursday, Sept. 14 at 6:35 p.m. and playoff tickets are on sale now. For tickets or more information, please call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com. The RailRiders' PNC Field will also host the Gildan Triple-A National Championship Game on Tuesday, Sept. 19 at 7:07 p.m.
OFF THE RAILS:
Tuesday marked the SWB franchise's first shutout loss in postseason play since Sept. 10, 2010 when the Columbus Clippers (Cleveland Indians) blanked the then-SWB Yankees, 1-0. That loss came in Game 3 of the first-round set. The Clippers would claim Game 4 the next day, 11-5, and went on to take the Governors' Cup. Columbus beat Durham in that year's finals in four games, outscoring the Bulls, 38-9, including a 13-2 clincher in Game 4.
Durham pitching retired the last 10 in a row to end the game.
The RailRiders went 0-for-2 with men in scoring position, both in the first inning. Durham finished 4-for-15 with men in prime real estate.
Mason Williams went 2-for-4 and Donovan Solano finished 1-for-4. The rest of the lineup went 0-for-20.
The Durham pitching staff did not issue a walk on Tuesday night.
Domingo German started a team shutout win at Durham in the final regular-season meeting between the teams on Aug. 20. He struck out nine over seven scoreless innings of four-hit ball that Sunday afternoon in Moosic.
The Bulls co-led the IL in shutout wins on the regular season with Pawtucket. Each team recorded 18 blankings.
CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES (Best of Five)
G1 Tue. Sept. 12 at Durham - DUR 6, SWB 0
G2 Wed. Sept. 13 at Durham 6:35 p.m.
G3 Thu. Sept. 14 vs. Durham 6:35p
*G4 Fri. Sept. 15 vs. Durham 6:35p
*G5 Sat. Sept. 16 vs. Durham 4:05p
GILDAN TRIPLE-A NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME (PNC Field - Moosic, Pa.)
NCG Tue. Sept. 19 7:07p (IL Champion vs. PCL Champion)
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International League Stories from September 12, 2017
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