DURHAM, NC - Reid Brignac homered and drove in four runs, leading the Durham Bulls to an 8-2 clubbing of the Norfolk Tides on the 4th of July. A crowd of 11,117, the third largest in Durham Bulls Athletic Park history, celebrated the Independence Day victory.
A red hot Tim Beckham quickly gave the Bulls a two run lead, smashing his second home run in the last five games over the Blue Monster in the top of the first. Norfolk shot right back though, as Blake Davis hit his own 2-run homer over the Monster in the following inning.
The score remained 2-2 until the bottom of the sixth. After newly named IL All-Star Leslie Anderson singled to start the frame, Tides starter Jason Berken (1-3, 3.23) balked to allow Anderson to advance to second. That would prove to be costly, as Brignac smoked a double to the right field corner putting the Bulls back on top. Chris Gimenez followed with a single up the middle, scoring Brignac and giving the Bulls an insurance run.
Brignac followed up with a 3-run blast over the 32-foot Blue Monster in the bottom of the seventh to put the game away. The middle infielder finished the day going 3-for-4 with a double, HR, 2 R and 4 RBI, just a triple away from the cycle.
Cesar Ramos (3-1, 1.42) and Dane De La Rosa combined to provide four scoreless innings in relief of Jim Paduch, who held Norfolk to two runs in his 5.0 innings of work. Ramos picked up his first win since May 1, striking out three in the effort.
Norfolk and Durham return to the DBAP tomorrow night for the short homestand's finale. RHP Tommy Hunter (1-0, 1.29) takes the hill for the Tides opposite LHP Alex Torres (3-3, 6.52) for Durham. The Bulls' Independence Week celebration continues with another fireworks show following the conclusion of Thursday night's game.