The Albuquerque Isotopes shut out the El Paso Chihuahuas 3-0 Thursday and moved to 4.5 games of first place with three games remaining in the current head-to-head series between the top two teams in the Southern Division.
The Chihuahuas’ magic number stays at eight with 11 games remaining in the regular season.
Christian Bergman pitched seven shutout innings for Albuquerque Thursday and has now tossed 14 innings against El Paso this season without allowing a run.
Bergman also hit a two-run single in the seventh inning to help his own cause. The Chihuahuas have been held to four runs in the first 21 innings of the series.
The Chihuahuas got a strong start of their own from Frank Garces Thursday, who surrendered two earned runs in 6.1 innings. El Paso starters have allowed only three earned runs in 12.1 innings so far in the series.
The Chihuahuas are now 8-5 in shutout games this season. Albuquerque stopped all Chihuahuas from reaching third base Thursday.
Team Records: El Paso (69-63), Albuquerque (64-67)
Next Game: Friday at 7:05 pm vs. Albuquerque at Isotopes Park. El Paso RHP Carlos Pimentel (11-7, 5.90) vs. Albuquerque RHP Eddie Butler (7-2, 4.65). Game coverage begins at 7:00 p.m. on 600 ESPN El Paso andwww.epchihuahuas.com
Albuquerque 3 El Paso 0 – Thursday
WP: Bergman (3-3)
LP: Garces (5-8)
S: Schlitter (6)