NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Memphis Redbirds defeated the division-rival Nashville Sounds 6-3 in extra innings on Friday night at Herschel Greer Stadium. Greg Garcia cleared the loaded bases with a two-out, three-RBI hit in the 11th inning.
Memphis evened the season series at 7-7 in the battle for the Tennessee Lottery I-40 Cup. The win in the second game of the series keeps the Redbirds (46-50) at two games behind first place Iowa in the PCL American Northern Division. Nashville (33-63) remains in fourth place.
Memphis starter Tyler Lyons faced the minimum in three of his five 2/3 innings pitched. The lefty was efficient with his 78 pitches, throwing 52 for strikes. Lyons gave up two runs on three hits with two walks and five strikeouts for the no-decision.
After a 1-2-3 first inning for Lyons, Hunter Morris hit the second pitch he saw to lead off the top of the second over the right field wall. Morris'19th homer gave the home team a 1-0 lead.
Memphis got the run back and knotted the score at 1-1 in the fourth inning. Brock Peterson reached and advanced to second base on an error and Tommy Pham drove him home. Pham extended his hitting streak to nine games on the RBI single to left.
In the sixth, Jermaine Curtis was issued a one out walk and stole second base. Chad Huffman knocked Curtis in with a single to right to give the 'Birds a 2-1 lead and force Nashville starter Aaron Laffey from the hill.
In his Sounds' debut, Laffey gave up two runs (one earned) on five hits with two walks and four strikeouts in five 1/3 innings pitched.
The Sounds would come back to tie the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the sixth. Kentrail Davis led off the inning with a single and one out later was sent home by a Scooter Gennett triple.
With two outs in the sixth and a runner on third, Michael Blazek came on in relief of Lyons. Blazek would surrender a hit and a walk with a strikeout in 1 1/3 scoreless innings of work.
Memphis took the lead again in the top of the eighth inning on Pham's first Triple-A home run. His one-out jack to right gave the Redbirds a 3-2 advantage.
An unearned run in the bottom of the eighth brought an end to Sam Freeman's franchise-record scoreless innings streak for a reliever. After 25 2/3 innings pitched without allowing a run, a lead-off walk followed by an error and a base hit tied the contest at 3-3.
Redbird reliever Nick Greenwood (2-3) threw a clean ninth inning and forced the game into extras. He tossed two innings, gave up a hit and struck out one for the win.
Adron Chambers started the rally in the top of the 11th with a two-out walk, followed by a Ryan Jackson single and another walk by Kolten Wong. Pinch-hitter Garcia followed with the game-winning single off Nashville reliever Travis Webb (1-4) who took the loss.
Fernando Salas picked up his third save with a strikeout and a walk.
In game three of the four game series, right-hander Boone Whiting (4-4, 4.94 ERA) faces righty Johnnie Lowe (0-1, 4.41 ERA) on Saturday at 6:35 p.m. CT in Nashville.