By Doug Maurer / Asheville Tourists | August 31, 2018 11:06 PM
ASHEVILLE- The effort was there. The fight was there. The determination and grit were also there. Unfortunately, even with all of those things, a baseball game can go the other team's way. That is what happened on Friday night.
The Asheville Tourists had a few bad breaks and the Rome Braves took full advantage knocking Asheville out of the playoff conversation with an 11-7 win. Asheville's starting pitcher, Lucas Gilbreath, was outstanding. The lefty was pounding the strike zone with a mix of pitches and even though he allowed a run in the first inning went on to retire 11 of 12 batters.
The Tourists built a 3-1 lead but in the top of the fifth the Braves used a Grand Slam off the bat of Jefrey Ramos to take a 5-3 lead. Asheville responded with a pair of runs in the bottom half to tie the game. Once again, the Braves had a big inning in them. This time in the seventh Rome scored five runs to take a 10-5 lead.
Casey Golden launched a two-run Home Run in the bottom of the seventh to bring the Tourists back to within striking distance. Asheville put the first two runners aboard in the eighth and ninth innings but were never able to bring the tying run to the plate after the Braves scored one more in the top of the eighth.
The loss officially eliminated the Tourists from a spot in the post-season and guarantees the Lexington Legends as the second half Southern division champions.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.