::Durham Bulls Head Blown Off
From Raleigh Chronicle Staff Reports
And Durham Bulls Baseball Club News
Thursday, April 19, 2007
DURHAM - Over the last 13 seasons the famous "Snorting Bull" that sits atop the Blue Monster at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park has survived a lot of direct hits from ballplayers aiming to win themselves a free steak, but on Monday it met its match in Mother Nature.
High winds with gusts over 50 mph ripped the head off of the Bull early Monday morning, ending the run of the junior bovine. The original Snorting Bull, built for and made famous by the movie Bull Durham, was replaced in 1995 when the team moved from the old Durham Athletic Park to it's new home on Blackwell Street. The original bull still sits on the first base side of the concourse.
"It was a sad sight to see when I arrived this morning," Durham Bulls General Manager Mike Birling said on Monday. "Mother Nature did what some pretty strong ballplayers never could. I hope she doesn't expect her free steak, though."
Birling said the team has already contacted "veterinarian of sorts" to put the Famous Bull back together again.
Bulls Win On Wednesday Night
Despite the Bull's mascot losing his head, the baseball team fared much better on the road in Columbus, Ohio.
Bulls catcher Raul Casanova's leadoff homer in the ninth ignited a two-run rally, as the Bulls came from behind to beat Columbus 5-4.
After Casanova homered off the scoreboard against Chris Booker (0-1), Jorge Velandia walked and was sacrificed to second by Elliott Johnson.
Dustan Mohr struck out, setting the stage for Chris Richard. Richard grounded one to deep at first. Larry Broadway field the ball to first and flipped to first.
Richard, with a head first dive, was called safe on a disputed call, and Velandia, running on contact, scored from second for a 5-4 lead.
Columbus had taken a 4-3 lead in the eighth against Chad Orvella (1-0) on a two-out wild pitch that scored former Bull Darnell McDonald.
Jeff Ridgway allowed a two-out walk in the ninth to McDonald, but got Tony Batista to ground to short to end the game.
The Durham bullpen allowed only one run and two hits over the final five innings as the Bulls battled back from a 3-0 deficit. The bottom of the Bulls lineup was the story offensively. Justin Ruggiano, Casanova and Velandia all had two hits, and combined to score all five Bulls runs.
Durham, now 6-8, 2-4 on an eight-game road trip, will look to make it two straight on this evening while in Columbus. ::