CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – Outfielder Mike Burgess’ solo home run in the top of the sixth inning provided all the offense the Tennessee Smokies needed as they defeated the Chattanooga Lookouts, 1-0, on Friday evening in front of a capacity crowd of over 6,300 fans at AT&T Field.
Four Tennessee hurlers combined to blank the Lookouts. Starter Trey McNutt fired 3.2 scoreless frames, allowing two hits and three walks while striking out three. Jeff Antigua (1-0) followed with 2.1 solid innings to pick up his first win of the season. Alberto Cabrero took care of the seventh and eighth innings before Frank Batista entered in the ninth and put runners on the corners with two outs but escaped the jam to earn his second save in as many days to open the season.
Chattanooga starter Ethan Martin went 4.2 shutout innings and yielded three hits and four walks while fanning six batters. Reliever Blake Johnson (0-1) absorbed the loss after surrendering the Burgess homer.
Burgess finished the night 2-for-4 while Tennessee second baseman Logan Watkins turned in his second straight multi-hit effort, going 2-for-4. For the Lookouts, second baseman Rafael Ynoa went 2-for-4 in the loss.
The Smokies and Lookouts play the middle contest of their five-game, season-opening series on Saturday night at 7:15 p.m. at AT&T Field when Tennessee sends left-hander Dallas Beeler to the mound while Chattanooga counters with southpaw Aaron Miller.
GAME NOTES: The Smokies (2-0) have won five straight meetings against their in-state rival dating back to last season… Tennessee’s bullpen has turned in 8.1 scoreless innings to open the season.
ABOUT THE TENNESSEE SMOKIES
The Tennessee Smokies are the minor league Class AA affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. Members of the 10-team Southern League, Smokies baseball has been entertaining families and fans of America’s national pastime in the East Tennessee region for over 100 years. To learn more about the Tennessee Smokies, visit www.smokiesbaseball.com.