The Birmingham Barons and Mississippi Braves turned back the clock for the 19th Annual Rickwood Classic at Rickwood Field Wednesday with the Braves prevailing by a score of 5-2 in front of 8,686 fans.
The M-Braves broke a scoreless tie in the fourth inning, getting two runs on a Seth Lohman RBI double and a Matt Kennelly RBI triple against starter Nick McCully (3-6, 5.65). They would be the only runs scored against McCully who allowed four hits and struck out four over 5.0 IP.
The lead grew to 5-0 in the sixth as Lohman, a former Baron who played in the Rickwood Classic during the 2011 and 2012 seasons, crushed a two-run home run to left-center field against reliever Evan Crawford. A David Rohm RBI single later in the inning plated the final run for the M-Braves.
The Barons plated both of their runs in the bottom half of the inning as Rangel Ravelo extended his hitting streak to 12 games with an RBI double off the iconic Rickwood Field scoreboard in left field and scored on a base hit by Luis Sierra, cutting the M-Braves lead to 5-2.
However, the Barons were unable to mount a final rally in the venerable old ballpark, falling to 3-3 in the second and half and 32-44 overall on the season. Martin Medina, playing in just his second Double-A game, started at catcher and led the Barons with two hits going 2-for-3.
Braves starter Greg Ross picked up the win in his Double-A debut, allowing two runs on five hits over 5.2 IP as Mississippi improved to 3-3 in the second half and 43-33 on the year.
The final attendance of 8,686 was the third highest in the 19-year history of the Rickwood Classic, trailing only the inaugural edition in 1996 (10,334) and the 2010 installment (9,448). Former Cy Young Award winner Dwight Gooden was the classic's Guest of Honor, threw out the ceremonial first pitch and signed autographs throughout the game. In addition, the Barons inducted a four-man class into the Barons Hall of Fame that included Mike Cameron, Joe Grzenda, Johnny Dobbs and Gabby Bell.
The Barons will look to rebound Thursday night when the two teams return to Regions Field for a matchup between RHP Chris Beck (3-6, 3.43) and RHP Williams Perez (3-3, 2.18). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM CDT.