KODAK, Tenn. (smokiesbaseball.com) -- With the game tied at four in the eighth inning, Mike Brenly hit a two-out, two-RBI double to give the Tennessee Smokies a 6-4 win over the Mississippi Braves at Smokies Park Saturday night. The win, in front of 5,531, was the Smokies sixth straight and improved their season’s record to 30-33.
Mike Burgess got the bottom of the eighth started with a single and was replaced by pinch runner Jim Adduci. Nate Samson followed with a single off Braves reliever Chris Jones’ leg and a throwing error by Jones allowed Adduci and Samson to advance one base, to put runners on second and third. Brenly then came through in the clutch for his second hit of the night to secure the win for Tennessee.
Down 2-0, the Smokies plated two runs of their own in the second inning. Burgess and Samson singled, and Burgess would come around to score on a RBI single by Elliot Soto. After Dallas Beeler sacrificed the runners over to second and third, a passed ball by Braves catcher Christian Bethancourt allowed Samson to score and tie the game at two.
Tennessee’s offense continued to put runs on the board in the third. With one out, Welington Castillo walked and Rebel Ridling followed with his team-leading seventh home run of the season to give the Smokes a 4-2 lead.
Beeler gave up a single run in the fifth and would exit the 4-3 game after five innings allowing three runs on five hits, walking three and striking out one.
Smokies reliever Jeff Antigua kept Tennessee’s lead at one in his two innings of work, allowing only one hit while striking out three.
Tennessee’s All-Star reliever Frank Batista come on to close out the game, but gave up a solo home run to Ian Gac to tie the game at four. It was Batista’s first blown save of the season.
Following Brenly’s game-winning double, Batista (1-0) closed out the game in the ninth.
Samson led the Smokies offensive attack going 3-for-4. Castillo, who was playing in his second game in his rehab assignment with the Smokies, walked all three times he came to bat Saturday night.
Tennessee and Mississippi will face off in Game 4 of their five-game series on Sunday at 5:00 p.m. at Smokies Park. The Smokies will send LHP Eric Jokisch (1-0, 2.38) and will be opposed by LHP Sean Gilmartin (3-5, 3.59). Sunday is Jimmy Buffett Tribute Night, and will feature $2 cheeseburgers and $2 Coronas. Following the game, the Smokies will offer a free concert featuring Key West. For tickets and more information call (865) 286-2300 or visit www.smokiesbaseball.com
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