De Fratus and Drillers Blank Naturals

Tulsa left fielder Cody Thomas made a highlight-reel catch in the second inning of Sunday's win. (Rich Crimi)

By Tulsa Drillers | July 7, 2019 11:02 PM

TULSA - Sunday night's game between the Tulsa Drillers and Northwest Arkansas Naturals featured a classic pitcher's duel between Justin De Fratus of the Drillers and Conner Green of the Naturals. Greene made one early mistake that gave De Fratus a slim lead that he never surrendered before the Drillers tacked on three late runs in a 4-0 win for Tulsa at ONEOK Field.

 

Entering the bottom of the seventh, Greene had held Tulsa to just one run on only two hits. But after a Cristian Santana single and a walk to Chris Parmelee, it was the end of the night for the Naturals starter. Andres Sotillet came in out of the bullpen and immediately allowed a single to Cody Thomas, loading the bases.

 

A couple of batters later, Logan Landon came up big. On a 1-1 count, Landon delivered a clutch, two-out double into the right centerfield gap that cleared the bases and extended the Drillers lead to 4-0.

 

The early Tulsa lead came courtesy of Zach McKinstry in the bottom of the first inning. On the third pitch of the night from Greene, the Drillers leadoff hitter crushed a drive deep and over the wall in right centerfield to give Tulsa a 1-0 lead.

 

De Fratus was masterful in protecting the slim lead through seven shutout innings. He struck out a season-high six batters, and allowed only four base hits, matching his season low.

 

The win allowed Tulsa to jump Northwest Arkansas in the Texas League North Division standings and back into second place. The Drillers are now three games back of the first-place Arkansas Travelers.

 

 

WHAT YOU MISSED:

 

*In the top of the second, Cody Thomas made a highlight-reel catch in the outfield. After Angelo Castellano drove a pitch into the left centerfield gap, Thomas sprinted to the drive and used every bit of his 6'4" frame to reach out to make the grab, while ending with a barrel roll.

 

*With a single on Sunday, Santana extended his hitting streak to eight games, the longest current streak on the team.

 

*The Drillers bullpen finished the night with two scoreless innings. Yordy Cabrera struck out three in the eighth inning, while Jordan Sheffield finished the night with a scoreless ninth, striking out one.

 

UP NEXT: Springfield at Tulsa, Monday, July 8, 7:05 PM at ONEOK Field. LHP Evan Kruczynski (2-3, 6.84 ERA) vs. RHP Edwin Uceta (0-2, 5.67 ERA).

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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