Down on the Farm: 1-2 record, Smokies in first place, highlights, more


by - Staff Writer -
Patrick Gorski - USA Today Sports
Patrick Gorski - USA Today Sports

A night after the offense stole the show; three teams were in action looking to stay hot in the minors. Despite some drama in the late innings and many potential exciting plays, it was the Smokies picking up the lone win as the farmhands went 1-2 on the evening.

IOWA CUBS: Off (Travel Day)

TENNESSEE SMOKIES 11 – Chattanooga Lookouts 4: After a night filled with offensive fireworks, the Smokies were at it again as their bats once again provided a considerable punch. With Cory Abbott rebounding from a tough outing last time out to go six strong innings of three-run (2 earned) on the night, the Smokies struck early and often with 11 runs in the first five frames before cruising to the victory.

Abbott got off to a rough start as the Lookouts struck early. With Jose Siri reaching base to continue his big series, Tyler Stephenson put Chattanooga in front 2-0 on his first homer of the season. Abbott settled in after that with the Smokies offense going to work in the bottom of the first.

A leadoff Roberto Caro walk followed by an error that allowed Nico Hoerner to reach had the Smokies in business with zero outs. Jared Young tied things up a few pitches later with a double setting Tennessee up for another run as he was now in scoring position. After advancing to third on a groundout, P.J. Higgins put the Smokies in front 3-2 with a sacrifice fly as they never looked back.

With Caro making it 4-2 after his second inning double, and Jhonny Pereda extending the lead to 5-2 after three the Smokies busted things open with a huge third inning. With the score 5-3 in the bottom of the fourth, Tennessee went to work looking to break things wide open. Another Young double pushed the lead to 6-3 before Robel Garcia, and Connor Myers followed that with a pair of doubles to push the lead to 9-3 Smokies.

A Pereda fielders choice capped off the five-run fourth, while Charcer Burks ground rule double ended the offensive output for the Smokies as they led 11-3 after five. The Lookouts managed to push one more run across in the eighth, but that was all she wrote with the Smokies cruising 11-4. The Smokies improved to 10-7 with the win and still sit in first place in their division. Young was on fire in this one going 3-5 with 3 RBI’s. Burks and Pareda each added a pair of hits while Hoerner was pulled after his lone at-bat.

MYRTLE BEACH PELICANS 3 – Carolina Mudcats 7: Looking to stay hot after winning four of their last five games, the Pelicans returned home to welcome the Mudcats. Unfortunately, a rough outing from Bryan Hudson mixed with minimal offensive support doomed the Pelicans as they fell to Carolina 7-3.

Playing from behind is something the Pelicans have done a lot this season, and that is precisely what happened after a scoreless first. With the bases loaded in the second, Rob Henry grounded into a fielder’s choice to plate the games first run before Devin Hariston added the second with a single and 2-0 Carolina lead. That lead grew to 3-0 in the third after the Mario Feliciano double, but that is when Myrtle Beach began to battle back.

Zach Davis showed off his wheels leading things off with a bunt single. Davis would then steal second before advancing to third on a grounder. His aggressive baserunning paid off as Carlos Sepulveda brought him home with a grounder to put the Pelicans on the board 3-1. Myrtle Beach closed within one in the fourth as the leadoff Cam Balego walk turned into gold with Jhonny Bethencourt bringing him home with the two-out single.

Carolina took it upon themselves to make sure the Pelicans would get no closer pushing across four runs in their next three at-bats to take a commanding 7-2 lead. Homers by Feliciano and Eddie Silva were the big blows, but Silva also added an RBI single during those times. The Pelicans managed to get one run back in the seventh off a Jimmy Herron sac-fly, but couldn’t get any closer falling 7-3 to open the homestand.

Now at 6-13, Myrtle Beach needs to focus on improving every day as they aim to get out of the cellar. Although hitless on the night, Miguel Amaya saw the ball well earning two walks in the game. The Pelicans collected eight hits as a team with Davis, the lone player to have multiple hits with two.

SOUTH BEND CUBS 5 – Lansing Lugnuts 6: A night after the bats lit up the stadium, the Cubs had a golden opportunity to take the first two games in this series Tuesday night. However, a bases-loaded chance in the ninth fell short sending the Cubs back to their hotels 6-5 losers.

Darek Casey took the ball to start and managed to keep his team in the game despite going just four innings. Casey was trailing at the time of his departure, but the bullpen couldn’t hold the Lugnuts offense down enough to let the Cubs come back.

Scoreless through two innings of play, Lansing managed to take control with three runs over the next two frames as an Alejandro Kirk single in the third got the scoring started before the Jake Brodt homer, and Dominic Abbadessa grounder made it 3-0 Lugnuts after four.

It took a while for the South Bend bats to get rolling, but they began to chip away in the sixth. With Jonathan Sierra on base, Nelson Velazquez brought home the first South Bend run of the night with a single making it 3-1. A few pitches later it was Tyler Durna driving one to the outfield for a double and just like that we had a 3-2 ballgame.

Lansing pushed the lead to 5-2 heading into the seventh when the Cubs came to bat yet again. For the second straight inning, traffic was on the bases as walks from Eric Gonzalez, and Cole Roederer and a D.J. Artis single loaded the bases with just one out. Andy Weber cashed in on that opportunity crushing a triple over the center fielders head to bring things to even at 5-5.

Lansing would get the last laugh despite some high drama late. With Reggie Pruitt bringing home the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly in the eighth, it was up to the Lansing pen in the ninth to hold off South Bend for the win. With the leadoff man retired, things got a little dicey as the patience of South Bend began to pay off.

With Roederer, Weber, and Sierra all consecutive working walks, the Cubs had the bases loaded with just one out and a golden chance to steal this victory. After the Velazquez strikeout had the Cubs down to their final out, it was up to Durna at the plate. Despite hitting the ball reasonably hard to left, it ended up being a routine flyout as the Cubs wasted their chance in the ninth to fall 6-5.

The theme continues for South Bend as they continue to alternate wins and losses for the 9-9 record thus far. Sierra led the offense in terms of hits as he was the lone player with two. The Cubs managed to work six walks late in the game with Roederer earning a pair of those.

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