Bulls

Bulls' historic season ends with championship game loss

Posted September 17, 2013

— It took a near-perfect game to keep the Bulls from adding to their 2013 trophy case. The Omaha Storm Chasers used shutdown pitching and stellar defense to win the Triple-A National Championship Game 2-1 on Tuesday night in Allentown, Pa.

Before the game, Durham Bulls manager Charlie Montoyo posted his starting lineup on the clubhouse bulletin board with a special message at the bottom.

“Note: Congratulations on a great year,” Montoyo wrote to his team.

The Bulls won 87 games in the regular season, third most in franchise history, and lost just one playoff game en route to their fourth Governors’ Cup title. It was fitting that a season filled with some of the most dominant Bulls pitching performances in memory ended with a brush with perfection, even if the pitcher was wearing the other jersey.

Omaha starter Chris Dwyer pitched 6.2 perfect innings before Tim Beckham broke up the perfect game with a clean single to right in the seventh.

For the Bulls, Jake Odorizzi struck out 8 batters in 4 innings, continuing a historic postseason. Odorizzi set team records for most innings (18) and strikeouts (24) in a postseason.

Omaha managed to accomplish something that Indianapolis and Pawtucket couldn’t, however. The Storm Chasers scored off of Odorizzi. After 15.2 postseason innings without a run, and 29.2 scoreless innings overall, Lane Adams hit a two-out double in the second and scored on Manuel Pina’s single up the middle.

It was the first run allowed by the Bulls in 30.2 innings, going back to game two of the Governors’ Cup finals against the PawSox, and with Dwyer next to unhittable, it would be enough.

I.L. Most Valuable Pitcher J.D. Martin relieved Odorizzi and kept the Bulls within striking distance, pitching four innings and allowing one run. Martin’s 16 wins were the most in the last 45 years of Durham baseball.

Team MVP Leslie Anderson got the Bulls on the board with a pinch-hit home run to right in the eighth inning. It was the team’s first pinch homer of the year.

Mike Fontenot’s scorching liner was then caught by pitcher Michael Mariot to end the inning, the second straight at bat where Fontenot was robbed of a hit by Omaha’s defense. CF Paulo Orlando ran down a gap shot that looked like extra bases in the sixth.

The Bulls refused to let the season end easily in the ninth. Cole Figueroa singled and Beckham walked, putting the winning run on base. Zach Jackson struck out Vince Belnome to clinch the crown for Omaha and end a Bulls season that won’t soon be forgotten.

3 Comments

This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • Sauras69 Sep 18, 4:12 p.m.

    The team made a great run. Super job overall.

  • wlcat609 Sep 18, 12:18 a.m.

    Anderson doesn't hit left handers very well which is why he wasn't in the starting lineup.

    Bulls left their game in Pawtucket and came into tonight's game 'flat' after a very emotional high winning that tough series. Bulls had a loosey - goosey practice yesterday (according to the article in the N+O) and weren't really focused at the task ahead of them. They got goose eggs for the first seven innings but former Clemson pitcher, Chris Dwyer, had a lot to do with dealing the donuts.

    One could say that the Bulls 'laid an egg' on National TV as the game was telecast on NBCSN.

  • Tunaboy Sep 17, 10:41 p.m.

    I wish I knew the logic behind giving Leslie Anderson only 1 at bat in the championship game. He made the most of that one at bat but why wasn't he playing the entire game?

  • NASL: RailHawks vs. Ft. Lauderdale

    Tomorrow at 7:30 am on WRAL-2

  • PGA: RBC Heritage

    Tomorrow at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: RBC Heritage

    Sunday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • MLB: Atlanta Braves at NY Mets

    Tomorrow at 7:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Boston Red Sox

    Sunday at 7:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
DUR 3
NOR 2
 
7:05pm Tonight
NOR
DUR
 
Final
PHI 1
ATL 0
Final
DET 7
CLE 5
Final
MIN 7
TOR 0
Final
TEX 8
SEA 6
Final
SFG 1
LOS 2
Final
SDP 1
COL 3
Final
PIT 11
MIL 2
Final
WAS 0
STL 8
Final
TAM 2
NYY 10
Final
MIN 9
TOR 5
Final
CWS 1
BOS 3
Final
HOU 1
KAN 5
2:20pm Today
CHC
CIN
 
7:05pm Tonight
PIT
MIL
 
7:05pm Tonight
WAS
STL
 
7:05pm Tonight
CLE
TOR
 
7:08pm Tonight
DET
ANA
 
7:10pm Tonight
NYM
ATL
 
7:10pm Tonight
BOS
BAL
 
7:10pm Tonight
TAM
NYY
 
7:10pm Tonight
MIA
SEA
 
8:05pm Tonight
TEX
CWS
 
8:10pm Tonight
KAN
MIN
 
8:40pm Tonight
COL
PHI
 
10:05pm Tonight
OAK
HOU
 
10:10pm Tonight
LOS
ARI
 
10:10pm Tonight
SDP
SFG
 
Final
NYR 4
PHI 1
Final
STL 4
CHI 3
Final
COL 5
MIN 4
Final
SJS 6
LOS 3
7:00pm Tonight
TAM
MON
7:30pm Tonight
BOS
DET
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
DAL
Final
DUR 3
NOR 2
 
7:05pm Tonight
NOR
DUR