HUNTSVILLE, Ala.- The Tennessee Smokies (55-48, 21-13) defeated the Huntsville Stars (44-58, 15-19) 6-3 Saturday evening at Joe W. Davis Municipal Stadium as four different Smokies hit home runs. Smokies starter Kyle Hendricks (10-3, 1.87) earned the win, pitching seven innings and allowing one earned run on six hits, while striking out six batters and walking just one.
Rubi Silva extended his hitting streak to 13 games in the top of the second inning with the second pitch he saw from Stars starter Brooks Hall. Silva blasted the 1-0 pitch from Hall over the right field fence to give the Smokies an initial 2-0 advantage.
Smokies’ center fielder John Andreoli gave Tennessee a 3-0 lead in the top of the third inning with his second home run this season, a solo jack over the scoreboard in center field. The center fielder entered the 2013 season with just one career home run.
Justin Bour continued to blast off against Huntsville in the top of the fifth inning as the first baseman shot a solo round-tripper to right center field, his 14th of the season, to extend the Smokies’ lead to 4-0. Saturday evening’s home run marked the fourth consecutive game the 6-foot-4 Bour has hit a solo home run. The power hitter finished the series against Huntsville 7-23 with four home runs, four RBIs and four runs scored.
Huntsville broke into the scoring column in the top of the fifth inning after shortstop Nick Shaw hit a two-out, RBI-single to center field, scoring former Chicago Cub Eric Patterson and cutting the Smokies’ edge to 4-1. Rene Tosoni lined a hit to right field off the glove of Bour in the following at-bat and Silva sailed a throw past third base to bring another run across for Huntsville, trimming the deficit to 4-2.
Tennessee answered back in the eighth inning with a two-run frame, led off by Christian Villanueva’s 14th home run of the season to give the Smokies a 5-2 edge. Silva followed with his seventh triple of the season in the next at-bat to set the plate for left fielder Jonathan Mota, who singled home Silva to extend the Smokies’ lead to 6-2.
Huntsville plated a run against Smokies’ reliever Tony Zych in the bottom of the ninth inning as catcher Adam Weisenburger grounded into a force out, scoring Brock Kjeldgaard and cutting the deficit to 6-3. Frank Batista came on in relief of Zych and earned his 13th save in 16 attempts.
Hall took the loss for Huntsville, going to 0-4 on the season bumping his ERA to 5.88.
The Smokies ended their series with the Stars having hit a total of 16 home runs in the five-game set, smashing at least two long balls in every contest.
North Division leading Tennessee returns to Smokies Park Sunday afternoon for the first set of a five-game series against the Birmingham Barons. The Smokies send left-hander Eric Jokisch (8-9, 3.61) to the mound while Birmingham will oppose with Spencer Arroyo (7-4, 3.17). First pitch from Kodak, TN is set for 5:00 p.m. EST.
To stay current with all the latest news, follow Smokies on Radio on Twitter and like the Smokies on Radio Facebook page. Nick Roark is a Broadcast & Media Assistant for the Smokies Radio Network. You can follow him on Twitter here: NickRoark4.