By: Adam Kline
Behind a near-perfect outing by Dae-Eun Rhee, the Tennessee Smokies defeated the Chattanooga Lookouts 7-3 Sunday afternoon in front of 3,176 at Smokies Park. With the win, the Smokies won the five-game set over the Lookouts and improved their overall record to 5-5.
The South Korea native, Rhee had a perfect game going to the fifth inning until he gave up a double to Lookouts’ third baseman C.J. Retherford. Rhee (1-0) pitched lights out for six innings, only allowing Retherford’s double and striking out three. He lowered his ERA to 0.87 on the season.
For the second straight night, the Smokies got on the board early, scoring two runs in the first inning off Lookouts starter Onelki Garcia. Matt Szczur led the game off with a single to left field. Ronald Torreyes walked and Arismendy Alcantara lined out to second base, scoring Szczur on a throwing error by Rafael Ynoa. Torreyes scored the second run of the inning on a sacrifice fly by Justin Bour.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Jae-Hoon Ha singled to third and later scored on a Jonathan Mota single to right field putting the Smokies up 3-0.
With the score 3-1, Tennessee widened the gap to 7-1 in the seventh. The inning started with a single by Mota to left field. Johermyn Chavez then doubled on a deep fly ball to right center. After a Szczur sacrifice fly, Torreyes got his first RBI as a Smoky, scoring Chavez. Alcantara reached on a single to right and eventually scored on a ground ball by Ha. The fourth run of the inning came on a wild pitch, scoring Bour.
The Lookouts narrowed the Smokies lead to 7-3 with runs in the seventh and eighth innings. Blake Smith singled to left field scoring Joc Pederson in the top of the seventh and Rafael Ynoa singled to left field scoring Miguel Rojas. Pederson grounded out to first, scoring J.T. Wise.
The Smokies put up 12 hits in the game. Ha was a perfect 3-3 on the day, with an RBI and a walk. He is now batting .343 on the season.
The Smokies will now travel to Huntsville, Ala. to take on the Huntsville Stars in a five-game series. The team will return home on Saturday, April 20 for a 10-game homestand, starting with a five-game set with the Montgomery Biscuits. For tickets and more information, fans can visitwww.smokiesbaeball.com, the Smokies ticket office or call .
Audio Recap: Smokies 7 Lookouts 3