The Charlotte Knights didn’t do their postseason hopes any favors on Wednesday.
Despite belting three home runs, the Knights dropped a 7-5 decision to the Durham Bulls at BB&T BallPark, moving a game closer to elimination from the International League’s playoff picture.
Charlotte (72-67) is now two games away from getting bumped from the playoffs, with five games remaining – the final two games against the Bulls (71-68), and a three-game series against Gwinnett (73-65).
That magic number could shrink even more, depending on how Wednesday’s doubleheader between IL South frontrunner Norfolk (76-62) and second-place Gwinnett turns out.
Matt Davidson belted two home runs – both two-run shots in the bottom of the first and sixth innings – giving him 22 homers for the season and tying for the IL lead with Durham’s J.P. Arencibia.
Matt Tuiasosopo also homered for Charlotte, a solo shot in the eighth inning. It was his career-best 17th home run of the season, and his first since Aug. 7.
But after Davidson’s first home run, Durham tagged Knights starter Brad Penny in the top of the sixth for two home runs – a three-run shot by Corey Brown, and a two-run homer by Cameron Seitzer.
Durham added a two-run double by Joey Rickard in the top of the seventh.
Quote: “It came down to the last couple of innings, and we couldn’t get anything going. We didn’t win. At this time of the year, it doesn’t matter what the other teams do if we don’t win.” – Knights manager Joel Skinner.
Worth mentioning: The Knights filled out their roster after the September callups of three players by bringing pitcher Arcenio Leon and third baseman Chris Curley off the disabled list on Wednesday. Leon, a right-hander, has been on the DL since May 3, after going 1-0 with a 10.97 ERA in eight appearances. Curley went on the DL July 3 after hitting .286 in nine games with the Knights after his callup from Double-A Birmingham two weeks earlier.
What's Next: The Knights host the Bulls in a “businessmen’s lunch” game Thursday afternoon at BB&T BallPark. Game time is 12:05 p.m. Right-hander Scott Carroll (7-4, 3.40 ERA) will start for Charlotte; lefty Everett Teaford (5-9, 5.34 ERA) will be on the mound for Durham.