Drillers Blank Arkansas In Series Opener

Wednesday, August 24th 2011, 9:19 am
By: News On 6


LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas -- The Tulsa Drillers managed to avoid a three-game losing streak thanks to a strong outing from starter Josh Sullivan, shutting out the Arkansas Travelers 5-0 Tuesday.

Sullivan (4-8) pitched five innings of shutout baseball for Tulsa (59-68), allowing just one hit and striking out five Arkansas (63-61) batters in his outing. Matt Shoemaker (12-3) struggled for Arkansas, walking three and allowing three earned runs on eight hits in six innings.

Shoemaker's first run allowed came after back-to-back mistakes by the Travelers' ace in the top of the first. After giving up a walk to Ben Paulsen to put runners on the corners, Shoemaker balked, allowing Tim Wheeler to come home from third and give Tulsa 1-0 lead.

The Drillers capitalized on Arkansas miscues yet again in the top of the fifth, with Hector Gomez scoring two at-bats after reaching base on a fielding error at first. Tulsa effectively ended Shoemaker's outing in the top of the sixth, thanks to a leadoff triple from Thomas Field, who scored via an RBI single by Brian Rike in the next at-bat.

Tulsa still sits six games out of securing the Texas League North's second-half playoff spot behind the Northwest Arkansas Naturals, with less than two weeks remaining in the season.