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Published: Saturday, 8/11/2001

Eight doubles put Mud Hens back in win column


A day after Toledo dropped a doubleheader to Durham, the Mud Hens doubled up on the Bulls.

The Mud Hens hit a season-best eight doubles on their way to defeating the Bulls 9-3 last night before 6,741 at Ned Skeldon Stadium.

Kurt Bierek produced two of the two-baggers, drove in two runs and scored twice for the Mud Hens.

“They say hitting is contagious,” Bierek said, in regards to the Mud Hens' 14 hits. “Basically, it's a big ballpark and the wind was blowing in and it was a matter of placing the ball in the gaps.”

The Mud Hens feasted on Durham right-hander Manny Aybar (1-1), who gave up a dozen hits (all eight doubles) and all nine Toledo runs during 111 pitches over 62/3 innings.

Toledo manager Bruce Fields liked how the Hens (58-64) rebounded from losing the first two games of the three-game series with Durham.

“We've got good character on this team and they're professionals,” Fields said. “I don't have to give them any rah-rah speech.”

As for the eight doubles, Fields considers it a result of some smart at-bats.

“We found the gaps and found the holes and got big hits when we needed them,” he said.

The Mud Hens jumped in front 2-0 in the first inning against the Bulls, who ended Toledo's seven-game winning streak Thursday night. Giomar Guevara recorded the first double of the game and eventually scored on a sacrifice fly by Carlos Mendez. Chris Wakeland hit another sac fly.

The Mud Hens rallied for three runs on four hits in the fourth, including back-to-back-to-back doubles by Wakeland, Mendez and Bierek.

Doubles by Bierek and Jarrod Patterson in the sixth inning led to another run to give Toledo a 6-3 lead. The Hens went on to score three more runs in the seventh to secure the victory.

The right-hander held the Bulls scoreless for three innings before giving up a run in the fourth. Durham's Jason Conti scored on Chris Hatcher's sacrifice fly to left.

The Bulls added two more runs in the fifth after Persails allowed the first two batters to reach base. Dustin Carr led off with a walk and ended up scoring on a Greg Martinez groundout. Paul Hoover, who singled, crossed home plate on a base hit by Conti.

Fields was caught off guard by the fans' reaction when he replaced Phelps with Bryce Florie with two outs in the eighth.

“The fans probably wanted him (Phelps) to finish it, but he's coming off a tender arm and we don't want to get anyone hurt,” Fields said.

Florie, who was activated by the Hens yesterday, finished off the Bulls (62-59). He didn't allow a hit and fanned one over the final 11/3.

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