The Bulls pounded out 15 hits to overcome three Mud Hens home runs, as Durham beat Toledo 9-8 Wednesday afternoon at the DBAP. First baseman Vince Belnome went 4 for 5 and scored three times, while third baseman Cole Figueroa went 3 for 4 with 3 RBI to lead Durham's offensive attack.
The hit parade helped Durham overcome a slow start by Bulls pitching prospect Jake Odorizzi. Toledo's Nick Castellanos hit a home run to center field in the first inning, his second in as many days, to give Toledo an early lead. Odorizzi gave up three home runs in the first two innings, after giving up just one long ball in his first three starts.
Durham bounced back in their half of the first. Consecutive hits by Leslie Anderson and Belnome scored Mike Fontenot, who had doubled. A double by Figueroa followed, scoring two runs, including Wil Myers, who reached base for the IL-leading 17th straight game. Tim Beckham's grounder scored another, giving Durham a short-lived 4-1 lead. A solo home run by John Lindsay and a two-run shot by Brad Davis in the top of the second knotted the game at 4 and matched Odorizzi's season-high for runs allowed.
The game turned in the third inning as Odorizzi opened the frame by throwing nine straight balls. He ended up walking the bases loaded before striking out three Mud Hens to escape the jam and take the International League lead in strikeouts. In the bottom of the inning, Belnome doubled, advanced to third on a Figueroa single, and scored on a Rich Thompson grounded to put Durham back on top.
Durham added a pair of unearned runs in the fourth as Anderson, Belnome, and Figueroa strung together three straight hits for the second time in the game. Belnome doubled home Myers, and Figueroa's singled plated Anderson, who had singled.
A bases-loaded walk by Beckham in the sixth, followed by a Thompson sacrifice fly seemed to put the game on ice as Durham took a 9-4 lead. Toledo rallied with four in the top of the eighth, against reliever Will Inman, before Frank de los Santos came in to end the threat. After closing out the eighth, de los Santos closed out the ninth for his first save of the season. Odorizzi (1-0, 4.09) got the win over Toledo starter Shawn Hill (0-2, 3.24), who took the loss. With the win, Durham improves IL South leading record to 14-6.
The Bulls and Mud Hens play the third game of their four-game series Thursday night at 7:05pm. RHP Chris Archer (3-0, 4.05) starts for Durham against Toledo's LHP Pat Misch (0-3, 5.21).
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.