Mitch Talbot had to follow the impressive Triple-A debuts of Durham teammates Jason Hammel and Jeff Niemann on Monday. It apparently didn't faze him a bit.
Talbot (1-0) and two relievers combined on a one-hitter as Durham blanked visiting Pawtucket, 5-0. The right-hander struck out four and walked two over six no-hit innings.
"I was relying on my location, fastball and changeup," Talbot said. "I mixed up my slider here and there. I tried to give them different looks."
After 80 pitches -- 48 for strikes, Talbot was lifted for Steve Andrade, who retired the first five batters he saw before Pawtucket's Chad Spann got a grounder past first baseman Jorge Cantu with two outs in the eighth inning to break up the no-hit bid.
"They felt it was time for me to come out," said Talbot, who admitted he was a little disappointed. "But it's early in the season and they're just trying to do what's best for you. "
Andrade fanned five over two innings, and Chad Orvella worked a 1-2-3 ninth to secure the shutout.
The Bulls (3-2) got all the offense they would need from Jeremy Owens' second-inning grand slam and Dustan Mohr's solo blast in the third.
Pawtucket starter Abe Alvarez (0-1) was charged with all five runs on four hits and three walks in five innings. Bryan Corey and Craig Hansen combined on the final three scoreless innings for the Red Sox (3-2).