JACKSON, Tenn.- The Tennessee Smokies (15-8, 49-43) took both games of Friday evening’s doubleheader versus the Jackson Generals (10-13, 39-50) at the Ballpark at Jackson, winning by scores of 2-0 and 2-1. The wins extend Tennessee’s current winning streak to five games, the longest winning streak for the Smokies this season.
Game one went into extra innings, as both teams were held scoreless through the first nine frames. Tennessee struck with runners at first and third and one out in the top of the 10th inning.
Shortstop Javier Baez drove in the Smokies’ first run with a single up the middle to score Jonathan Mota and give Tennessee a 1-0 over Jackson. Generals’ third baseman Steven Proscia could not field a lined shot by Justin Bour in the next at-bat, and that brought in Arismendy Alcantara and extended the lead to 2-0.
Smokies’ hurler Austin Kirk tossed his best outing of the season with Tennessee but took a no-decision. The left-hander threw six scoreless innings and allowed just four hits while striking out three batters.
Hunter Cervenka worked the 10th inning and earned his first save of the season in as many attempts. Frank Batista (3-3, 2.66) earned the win by throwing three innings and allowing no hits.
The second half of Friday’s doubleheader spilled into extra innings as runs were sparse. Tennessee and Jackson were scoreless in the bottom of the third inning until Michael Dowd blasted a no-doubt home run off Smokies starter Yeiper Castillo that landed over the left field wall and gave the Generals a 1-0 lead.
The home run was the only blemish on Castillo’s evening as the Venezuela native allowed one hit and one earned run while striking out six batters in four innings of work.
Baez put Tennessee on the board and tied things up in the sixth inning. The Cubs’ top prospect launched his second home run with Tennessee over the 15-foot left center field wall, knotting the contest at one.
Tennessee took the lead in the ninth inning with a couple of doubles by key producers in the lineup. Bour led off the frame with a two-bagger to the right field wall. Jonathan Mota came on to pinch run, and in the ensuing at-bat, Christian Villanueva smacked his Southern League leading 23rd double of the season to left field, bringing in Mota and giving the Smokies a 2-1 edge.
Smokies reliever Kevin Rhoderick (1-3, 4.95) earned the win, pitching three no-hit innings of baseball and retiring nine consecutive batters.
Tennessee returns to action Saturday evening at 7:05 p.m. ET. North Division All-Star starter Kyle Hendricks (8-3, 2.13) will get the call for Tennessee while James Gilheeny (3-3, 3.50) toes the rubber for Jackson.
AUDIO RECAP- GAME ONE
AUDIO RECAP- GAME TWO
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