After gaining a 6-3 lead through five innings on Father’s Day evening, the Smokies gave up eight runs in the last three innings to lose the final series of the first half. Rafael Dolis (4-4, 3.48) was called on by Manager Brian Harper in the ninth inning to close out the Smokies 6-5 lead but it was not meant to be.
Dolis gave up five earned runs, including a three run homer to Kyle Russell, and only last 2/3 of an inning before being replaced by none other than catcher Blake Lalli to get the final out of the game. Lalli was called in to get the final out due to the lack of pitching arms available for the Smokies on Sunday evening. Lalli gave up a solo homerun to Jaime Pedroza before recording the final out of the inning.
The loss gives the Smokies only their third series loss of the first half. Even though Tennessee goes into the All-Star break on a sour note, they have still been crowned 2011 Southern League North First Half Champions. After the three day All-Star break the Smokies will return to action on Thursday night to face the Birmingham Barons. The first game will begin at 8:05 p.m. on Thursday evening.