Fans at Durham Bulls Athletic Park haven’t seen many pitchers’ duels better than the one they saw Saturday night.
The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees got all the scoring they needed on solo homers from Terry Tiffee and Greg Golson, while all the Bulls got was one solo from Leslie Anderson as the Yankees took a 2-1 win over the Bulls in front of 10,268.
Yankees starter and UNC alumnus Adam Warren had the no-decision despite a gem of a quality start, going six shutout innings and allowing six hits with seven strikeouts against a walk.
He was just a little better than Bulls starter Chris Bootcheck (3-2), who took the hard-luck loss for Durham in his fourth straight quality start, going 7 1/3 and allowing two runs on five hits with seven strikeouts against three walks.
“Both guys pitched very well,” Yankees manager Dave Miley said. “In this park when three runs are scored and they’re all solo home runs – that doesn’t happen a lot, I guess. Both starters threw the heck out of the ball and it’s just unfortunate either one of them had to play in any kind of decision.
“Warren has been that solid. You’ve got to give Scotty (pitching coach Aldred) a lot of credit. They’ve had a lot of work together.”
Eric Wordekemper (2-0) was the winner in relief while Randy Flores picked up his second save as the Yankees extended their winning streak to three games.
“I feel like I’m improving, but there’s work I need to do,” Warren said. “When the time is right (a promotion) will come. I had a lot of friends and family here, people who hadn’t gotten to see me pitch in the minor leagues. It was a great atmosphere and I enjoyed it. “My fastball command was better than it’s been, and I used my other pitches to keep them off balance.”
Golson led the Yankees with the homer and a single.
Anderson homered, doubled and singled for Durham while Desmond Jennings added three hits and a pair of stolen bases.
“Bootcheck gave us a chance,” Durham manager Charlie Montoyo said. “He did what we needed because our bullpen was so thin. He just made two mistakes.”
Tiffee put the Yankees up 1-0 with one out in the fifth, when he launched a 1-1 pitch into the right-field bleachers.
And as soon as Warren was off the mound, Anderson led off the seventh by launching Wordekemper’s 0-1 pitch high into the right-field bleachers.
But Golson got the run back in the eighth, leading off by blasting a 2-0 pitch from Bootcheck over the Blue Monster wall in left.
“You just have to tip your cap,” Bootcheck said. “Their starting pitcher did a great job and their bullpen did a great job and they got the big hits when they needed to. I felt good and was throwing the ball where I wanted to. I felt like getting into the seventh and eighth with a chance was achievable. We just came out on the wrong side of it tonight.”
Game 3 of the four-game set is Sunday at 5:05 p.m., with Lance Cormier (0-1, 1.86) going for the Bulls against southpaw Kei Igawa (0-0, 0.84).