Tennessee 5 – Mississippi 6 (F/11)
After plating the tying run in the top of the eighth inning, the Tennessee Smokies managed to hang on against the Mississippi Braves, but the Atlanta affiliate pushed a run across in the bottom of the 11th inning to beat the Smokies, 6-5, on Thursday.
With two men on and one out in the bottom of the 11th, the Braves’ Cedric Hunter singled an Austin Kirk pitch to right field, scoring Mycal Jones and giving Mississippi a walk-off win in front of the home faithful.
Kirk (1-2, 4.70 ERA) was charged with one earned run on two hits in just 1/3 of an inning, in which he also issued a walk. Prior to that, three Smokies relievers combined to allow two runs in five innings of work in relief of starter Joel Pineiro, who allowed three runs, two earned, in five innings of work. Also worth noting is the fact that Pineiro made his first start of the year Thursday.
Stephen Bruno continued his hot hitting for Tennessee (23-17), lining an RBI single in the top of the first inning. Rafael Lopez followed later in the inning with a two-run home run – his fourth long ball of the campaign.
Mississippi added two runs in the bottom of the second to cut the Tennessee lead to 3-2 before tying the game on an error by Bruno in the bottom of the fourth.
Kris Bryant laced his 10th double of the season in the top of the seventh inning with two outs, putting the Smokies back on top, but that lead would not last.
The Braves (21-19) bounced back with a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh against Smokies reliever Jeff Lorick, who was charged with two runs on four hits in just two innings of work, raising his ERA to a less-than-ideal 7.45 on the season.