DURHAM, NC - The Buffalo offense broke out in a big way Friday afternoon, snapping a six-game losing streak with a 19-7 win at North Carolina Central. The team hit five home runs and five different players had multiple runs batted in.
It was a fast start, with the Bulls plating six in the first inning alone. Alex Baldock drove in Matt Pollock on a single. Following two walks, Baldock scored from third base on a passed ball. Michael Burke came up next and drove in two more runs on a double to right center field. Andrew Smietana scored him with another double and in the very next at-bat, Jason Kanzler scored Smietana on a single to cap the onslaught at six runs.
After NC Central scored a run in the bottom of the second, Buffalo padded the lead with six more runs. Smietana led off with another double and later scored on a sacrifice fly from Pollock right after he moved to third on an error by the NCC shortstop on a hit by Kanzler. Daniel Scahill stepped to the plate, with Kanzler on second after a steal, and promptly laced a home run to right center field. Baldock made it a back-to-back affair with a solo shot immediately after. Following a single from River McWilliams, Eric Bryce joined the longball club with a two-run home run to right center, chasing the Eagles' pitcher from the game.
Now with a 12-1 lead in the seventh, Pollock tallied another sac fly to score Bryce. NC Central scored two runs apiece in the seventh, eighth and ninth to make it 13-7, but a third six-run inning in the top of the ninth pushed the final score to 19-7. The six runs came thanks to a three-run home run from Baldock - his second of the game - as well as a second home run from Bryce (a two-run shot to right center).
The offense provided more than enough for starter Kevin Crumb, who earned his second win of the season after seven innings. He gave up only three runs and struck out four while walking none to move his season record to 2-2.
As a team, Buffalo batted .422 in the game (19-45) and also drew a season-high 14 walks. Baldock finished 5-7 with five runs batted in on his two home runs. Bryce, making just his second start of the season, ended the day with four runs batted in on three hits. Smietana was a nuisance at the plate as well, going 2-3 with one run batted in to go with three walks.
The two teams will be back at it again tomorrow for game two of the three-game weekend series. First pitch is set for 1 pm.