DURHAM, NC - The Durham Bulls erupted for a 10-2 win over the Charlotte Knights Friday night at the DBAP, halting a four-game losing skid behind a 13-hit outburst that saw five players tally multi-hit games.
Richie Shaffer starred for Durham offensively, going 3-for-4 with a home run, two RBI and two runs scored, while Johnny Field finished 2-for-4 with a dinger, and also plated a pair and scored twice.
After three scoreless innings opened the ball game, Durham (54-66) erupted for a five-run fourth inning to take a commanding lead. Casey Gillaspie knocked a double to left field to score Daniel Robertson for the game's first run, before Curt Casali lifted a three-run dinger just inside the left field foul pole for a 4-0 advantage. Shaffer then followed with a double, stole third base, and scored on a groundout by Hank Conger.
In the sixth former Bull Jason Bourgeois doubled off the Blue Monster to score Adam Engel and Leury Garcia to put Charlotte (51-69) on the board, and the visitors would have scored more if not for a diving catch later in the frame by Field in center.
Field then struck on the offensive side of the ball in the bottom of the seventh inning, blasting a two-run homer to left as the home side retook a five-run lead. In the eighth the Bulls continued to rout their intrastate rivals, as Shaffer knocked a two-run home run over the Blue Monster, and Jake Hager doubled home Field for a 10-2 score.
Justin Marks (6-10) picked up the victory with seven strong innings, allowing two runs on four hits across seven innings while striking out eight. Right-hander Anthony Ranaudo (6-5) suffered the loss after surrendering five runs on six hits in four frames.
Hager finished 2-for-5, white Casali and Taylor Motter finished with a pair of hits as well. Neil Wagner tossed 1 1/3 scoreless innings in relief for Durham, while Adam Kolarek notched the game's final two outs as the Bulls took the opener of the three-game set.
The teams continue the series on Saturday at 6:35 p.m., when RHP Jaime Schultz (5-5, 3.24) takes the mound for Durham against LHP David Holmberg (0-2, 4.26) for Charlotte.
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