On rainy and chilly Thursday night at Regions Field, the Biloxi Shuckers (13-8) fell 7-3 to the Birmingham Barons (10-11) in the first of a five-game series. The Shuckers maintain a 2.5 game lead in the South Division over the Mobile BayBears.
Biloxi jumped out to a lead in the third inning. Clint Coulter scorched a ball up the middle for a leadoff single, and motored around to score from first on a double by Dylan Moore, giving the Shuckers a 1-0 lead. Moore advanced to third on a groundout by Corey Ray and scored on a passed ball to make it 2-0. Lucas Erceg and Nick Franklin walked to put two more runners on base, and Erceg scored on a double by Blake Allemand that dropped between three Baron defenders, pushing Biloxi to a 3-0 lead.
Birmingham responded with a run in the bottom of the third, scoring its lone run against Brad Kuntz on a double by Eloy Jimenez. Kuntz fired 3.0 innings, allowing just a run on four hits while walking one and striking out four.
In the fourth and fifth, the Shuckers placed men on base thanks to four combined errors by the Barons, but bounced into inning-ending double plays in both frames. Biloxi would not put a man on base the rest of the contest. Barons starter Dane Dunning (W, 1-0) picked up his first Double-A win after firing 6.0 innings.
Reliever Angel Ventura (L, 0-1) seemed to be rolling to a 1-2-3 inning in the bottom of the fifth, but Jimenez reached on a throwing error by Erceg. Seby Zavala walked and Matt Rose brought both runners home with a three-run homer, his first of the season, to give the Barons a 4-3 advantage.
The Barons would add on three more in the bottom of the seventh on back-to-back home runs off Ventura, widening their lead to 7-3. LHP Quintin Torres-Costa entered the game and hurled 2.0 shutout inning, not allowing a hit and striking out two.
Game two of a five-game series is on Friday night at 7:05 pm CT. Biloxi is slated to send LHP Wade Miley (0-1, 6.35) to the mound against RHP Spencer Adams (1-1, 5.74). The game can be heard locally on Cruisin' WGCM AM 1240/FM 100.9, on TuneIn Radio or the MiLB First Pitch App.
Single game tickets for the Biloxi Shuckers 2018 season are on sale now and can be purchased at the MGM Park box office or over the phone through Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Season tickets, flex plans and group outings are also available and can be reserved by calling 228-233-3465 or visiting www.biloxishuckers.com.
ABOUT THE BILOXI SHUCKERS:
The Biloxi Shuckers are the Double-A Affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers. The Shuckers play at MGM Park in Biloxi, Mississippi. For more information please visit biloxishuckers.com and follow us on Twitter @biloxishuckers and at facebook.com/biloxishuckers.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.