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Rays down on the farm September 5: Bullpen helps Bulls even series

Three relievers shut down Columbus to keep the game in reach

Merrill Kelly started an impressive stretch of relief work in Durham's game two win
Merrill Kelly started an impressive stretch of relief work in Durham's game two win
Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Both Durham and Hudson Valley play game threes tonight, but there's a lot more at stake in the New-York Penn League.  The winner will face defending champion Tri-City in the best of three final.  If State College wins, it'll be a rematch of last year's championship.  If Hudson Valley wins, it'll be a rematch of the 2012 championship, won by the Renegades.

Triple-A Durham Bulls (1-1)

After not getting much going against starter Tyler Cloyd, Durham made a late comeback to tie the series with a 10 inning 4-3 win over Columbus.  With one out in the ninth, Mike Fontenot singled home Ray Olmedo to tie the game.  They had a chance to go ahead, but Luke Maile popped up with two runners on base, and Justin Christian flew out with two runners in scoring position to end the inning.  An inning later, Cole Figueroa led off with a triple, and Tim Beckham drove in the winning run with a sac fly.  Nick Franklin finished with three hits including a double.

He allowed a second inning solo home run, but Enny Romero started the game firing strikes.  He got of trouble in the third, but his night would end after allowing the Clippers to go ahead with two fifth inning runs.  Romero allowed three runs on six hits and two walks in five innings with six strikeouts, and 59 of his 88 pitches were strikes.  In the sixth, Merrill Kelly allowed a leadoff single, but after that, he, Josh Lueke and Adam Liberatore retired 15 straight batters.

Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (1-1)

State College's pitching turned the table on the Renegades in Hudson Valley's game two 3-0 loss.  A night after getting shut out, two Spikes pitchers responded by only allowing four baserunners of their own.  Hudson Valley didn't have a baserunner until two outs in the sixth when Alec Sole singled to break up the perfect game.  Braxton Lee followed that with a double, but Sole stopped at third and was stranded there when Coty Blanchard grounded out.

The Spikes offense wasted no time getting to work.  Darren Seferina led off the game with a single, and after he advanced two bases on a wild pitch, and Hudson Valley conceded the first run of the game on a groundout.  A one out triple an inning later led to their second run, and they tacked on an unearned insurance run against Hunter Wood in the sixth.  Wood was charged with three runs (two earned) on four hits ad a walk in six innings with five strikeouts.

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Star of the day- Durham's bullpen is a huge reason the series is tied going to Durham.

Goat of the day- Hudson Valley should try scoring tonight.

Today's games (probables courtesy of milb.com)

Durham v. Columbus 7:05 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Matt Andriese (11-8, 3.77) v. Shaun Marcum (1-0, 2.35)

Game three of a best of five series (Series tied 1-1)

Hudson Valley @ State College 7:05 PM (Radio stream)
Nolan Gannon* (6-2, 2.84) v. Fernando Baez* (2-2, 3.94)

Game three of a best of three series (Series tied 1-1)

*Listed as TBA on milb.com

Scouting the opposition

Columbus Clippers (Cleveland)
1-1
Offense: 672 R (2nd) .743 OPS (4th)
Pitching: 3.71 ERA (6th) 1.27 WHIP (1st)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Francisco Lindor (1), OF Carlos Moncrief (14), LHP Scott Barnes (26), RHP Shawn Armstrong (29), OF James Ramsey, LHP Nick Maronde

State College Spikes (St. Louis)
1-1
Offense: 398 R (1st) .743 OPS (1st)
Pitching: 2.96 ERA (2nd) 1.20 WHIP (3rd)
Top 30 Prospects: OF Kenny Peoples-Walls (18), SS Edmundo Sosa (25), 3B Danny Diekroeger