The first-place Durham Bulls opened an eight-game homestand with a 10-7 win over the IL West-leading Indianapolis Indians at the DBAP Thursday night. Durham used an eight run fifth to blow past Indy in a three hour, twenty one minute marathon that also featured a 34 minute rain delay to start the game.
Lefthander Mike Montgomery (W, 3-0, 4.20), originally scheduled to start Friday's game, came on in relief of Alex Colome in the third inning and allowed six runs in 3.1 IP, as the Bulls saw their 2-1 lead disappear.
With Indianapolis leading 7-2 and on the verge of breaking the game open, the Bulls rallied for eight runs in the fifth. Durham banged out 8 hits in the inning, matching their season high set in a 10-run first inning against Gwinnett on April 9. Mike Fontenot's bases loaded double scored two runs. Tim Beckham had another two-run double later in the inning, and Jesus Flores and Wil Myers added RBI singles.
Cole Figueroa went 3-for-4 on the night, and Fontenot had 3 RBI. The Bulls also scored three runs by taking advantage of two Indianapolis wild pitches and a passed ball.
Durham reached double-digits in scoring for the twelfth time this year and the first time since beating Scranton 15-2 on June 3. The Bulls have scored 10 or more in four of their last nine games at the DBAP.
The sloppy game not only featured a 34 minute rain delay, but also two errors for each team and a total of five unearned runs. Montgomery got the win in relief, beating Indianapolis reliever Graham Godfrey (5-4, 4.96). Kirby Yates earned his fourth save. Pirates pitcher Jeanmar Gomez went 3 innings and allowed 3 hits, 2 runs, 1 earned and struck out 3 in his first injury rehab start.
The battle of division leaders continues Friday at 7:05pm at the DBAP. RHP Merrill Kelly, called up from Double-A Montgomery earlier in the day, makes his first Bulls start. LHP Andy Oliver starts for Indianapolis.