At 6-foot-2 and 205 pounds, Phil Negus can be an intimidating figure on the mound. On Thursday night, he suited that role perfectly.
Negus may not have earned the win, but he played a key role in Class A Kannapolis' 2-1, 10-inning win over Asheville. He took a no-hitter into the seventh inning, eventually allowing one run on two hits in 6 1/3 innings of work at Fieldcrest Cannon Stadium.
The 23-year-old tied a season high with six strikeouts and did not issue any walks. He also fanned six while picking up the victory in a six-inning outing in Kannapolis' 5-3 win over Lakewood on July 16.
An 18th-round pick of the Chicago White Sox in 2009, Negus has allowed only four earned runs in 24 innings this month, lowering his ERA to 2.52. The Wake Forest product would stand third in the South Atlantic League if he had enough innings to qualify for the ERA title. Since only five of his 25 appearances have been starts, he has thrown just 60 2/3 innings this season.
The only Asheville player to reach base off Negus over the first six innings was Brett Tanos, who got aboard on a fielding error by third baseman Rangel Ravelo in the second.
Cristhian Adames took Negus deep to lead off the top of the seventh. After striking out Kyle Parker, Negus gave up a single to Mark Tracy to end his night.
Reliever Wes Whisler struck out Corey Dickerson and picked off Tracy to end the inning. Whisler allowed a double and a walk in the eighth, but escaped the inning with the game still tied.
Chris Bassitt (1-0) struck out three in two scoreless innings of relief to earn the first win of his professional career.
Dan Black plated the winning run in the 10th with a walk-off RBI single.