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Bulls Offense Sputters in 8-2 Loss

Bulls' bats silent as Knights even series
Nathan Karns took the loss Tuesday, despite striking out nine hitters over 4 2/3 innings
April 8, 2014

DURHAM, NC - The Charlotte Knights took an 8-2 decision over the Durham Bulls Tuesday night at the DBAP, evening the four-game series at one game apiece as the home side managed just four hits.

Center fielder Jordan Danks opened the scoring in the third for the Knights with a line-drive home run onto the right field concourse. Danks added another RBI on a sacrifice fly later in the game.

The Bulls (3-3) answered back though, taking the lead in the bottom of the third on a two-run double by Justin Christian, who raised his average to .318 on the young season.

The Durham lead was short-lived, however. Charlotte (4-2) responded with two runs of its own in the top of the fourth on back-to-back sacrifice flies and never looked back. Matt Davidson and Andy Wilkins doubled in runs in the fifth, and Tyler Saladino's triple highlighted a two-run eighth inning. Saladino was 3-for-3 with 3 RBI.

Meanwhile, Charlotte starter Scott Carroll and reliever Deunte Heath held the Bulls at bay. Durham didn't get a hit after the third inning, and Charlotte set down nine Bulls in a row from the fifth through eighth innings.

Bulls starter Nathan Karns (0-1) took the loss, despite striking out nine batters in 4 2/3 innings. The right-hander gave up six earned runs, raising his ERA to 13.50 in two starts.

Carroll (2-0) has yet to give up an earned run this season, after tossing six frames and surrendering two runs (none earned) on four hits to earn the win.

Durham's Mike Fontenot finished 0-for-3, ending his 18-game hitting streak spanning the last two seasons which was the longest active streak in the International League.

The Bulls and Knights play game three on Wednesday at 7:05 p.m. LHP Enny Romero (0-1, 9.00) starts for the Bulls against RHP Andre Rienzo (0-0, 0.00) for the Knights.

BULLet Points: Bulls pitchers recorded 15 strikeouts, the most since they struck out 16 on June 14, 2013 against Indianapolis… LHP Jeff Believeau was promoted to Tampa Bay earlier in the day, and was replaced on the roster by C Mayo Acosta, who struck out as a pinch hitter in the ninth inning… RHP Juan Carlos Oviedo pitched a 1-2-3 inning for the second straight night in his third rehab appearance.