By Roger Hoover / Smokies Radio Network
The Tennessee Smokies look to continue their winning ways on Thursday night, facing the Pensacola Blue Wahoos at Smokies Park.
The Smokies have won the first four games of the series, with three of the wins coming in seven-inning contests.
This would be the first series sweep of the year for the Smokies, although Tennessee has twice won the first four games of a series before.
Tonight Tennessee will send right-hander Jake Brigham to the mound for his Southern League debut. Brigham, added to the Smokies roster Thursday, joins the Cubs organization from the Texas Rangers. He was acquired in this week’s trade as former Smoky Geovany Soto was sent from the Cubs to the Rangers. In the Double-A Texas Leauge with Frisco, Brigham was 5-5 with a 4.28 ERA in 21 starts and was a Texas League All-Star.
Starting for the Blue Wahoos is right-hander Wirfin Obispo, who is 2-0 with a 2.63 ERA this season in Pensacola.
Here are more notes on tonight’s game, direct from the official Tennessee Smokies game notes compiled by Cody Chrusciel:
SETTING THE SCENE
Having won the first four games of their first-ever series against the Blue Wahoos, the Smokies look for their first series sweep of the season tonight in the finale of a five- game set. The Smokies have won the first four games of a series twice (June 7-11 @ Mississippi and June 13-16 @ Birmingham) but each time they dropped the finale. Since the start of the 2009 season, the Smokies are 52-27 (.658) against the Pensacola/Carolina franchise.
LAY DOWN THE LUMBER
Smokies pitchers are batting .040 (4-for-101) this season. Hurlers currently on the Smokies roster are a combined 0-for-85. It has been over two months since a Smokies pitcher has recorded a hit (Brooks Raley – 5/17 @ MIS).
On Wednesday, INF Matt Cerda was added to the Smokies roster from High-A Daytona. A trio of Smokies were promoted to Triple-A Iowa: INF Greg Rohan, C Juan Apodaca, and RHP Ty’Relle Harris. On Thursday, RHP Jake Brigham was added to Tennessee’s roster.
THE MAN ON THE MOUND
Right-hander Jake Brigham, who was acquired by the Cubs on Tuesday in a trade with the Texas Rangers in exchange for catcher Geovany Soto, is scheduled to make his Smokies debut today. The 24-year-old, who the Rangers drafted out of high school in the sixth round in 2006, has spent the entire 2012 season with the Double-A Frisco RoughRiders, going 5-5 with a 4.28 ERA in 21 starts while being named to the Texas League All-Star team. Over six professional seasons, the Orlando, Fla., native is 27-42 with a 4.40 ERA.
Fans can listen to the games on the Smokies Radio Network, with the “Voice of the Smokies” Mick Gillispie entering his sixth season as Tennessee’s Director of Broadcasting. The 2010 Southern League Broadcaster of the Year is assisted by Cody Chrusciel, Roger Hoover, Jonathan Guess, and Adam King. Chrusciel and Hoover will host the Pilot Oscar-Mayer Pregame Show beginning at 7 p.m. on the Smokies Radio Network.
Tonight’s broadcast will air on the Smokies Radio Network’s flagship station The Sports Animal WNML AM 990, FM 99.1 and 99.3 plus the Smokies mobile app. Click the link below to listen live online.