KODAK, Tenn. (release) -- Arismendy Alcantara hit his seventh home run of the season, but that was the only offense the Tennessee Smokies could muster in a 7-2 loss to the Huntsville Stars Saturday night at Smokies Park. With the defeat, the Smokies fall to 24-23 on the season and 5.5 games behind first place Birmingham.
Smokies starter Alberto Cabrera looked pretty solid in his tenth start of the season. The righty struck out three batters in his first three innings. The Stars (22-26) got on the board in the fourth, when Kentrail Davis led off the inning with a single, advanced to second on a wild pitch and took third on a balk. Cabrera then hit Rene Tosoni with a pitch and later, Tosoni stole second base. With runners on second and third, Mike Walker hit a two-run single to center to give the Stars a 2-0 lead.
Trailing 3-0 in the fifth inning, the Smokies finally got to Huntsville starter Taylor Jungmann via a two-run home run by Arismendy Alcantara, his seventh long ball of the season.
Cabrera (4-2) closed out his night after six innings allowing five runs, four earned on six hits, walking three and striking out seven before giving way to the bullpen.
Tennessee reliever A.J. Morris went 1.1 innings, giving up three hits, two runs and walked three. Brian Schlitter came in to finish out the game, going 1.2 innings and only giving up a hit and a walk. He also struck out a batter.
Jungmann (4-5) got the win for Huntsville and the Stars bullpen of Santo Manzanillo, Thomas Keeling and Casey Medlen shut down the Smokies tossing three perfect innings to close out the game. Following Alcantara’s home run in the fifth, the Stars pitching did not allow a single Smokies hitter to reach base.
The Smokies will try to get back on the winning track against the Stars Sunday afternoon at 2:00. Tennessee will send southpaw Eric Jokisch (3-3, 3.47) to the mound against Huntsville righty Andy Moye (2-5, 4.76). For tickets and more information, visit www.smokiesbaseball.com or call (865) 286-2300.