Three-run eighth sinks Birmingham's bid for comeback
Luis Basabe improved his hitting streak to 14 games with a two-run homer in the sixth inning on Thursday. (Aaron Cheris)
By John McClung / Birmingham Barons | July 26, 2018 11:14 PM
Luis Basabe's two-run homer couldn't spark a big enough rally as the Birmingham Barons (52-50) fell to the Tennessee Smokies (51-53) 7-3 on Thursday night at Regions Field.
Moments That Mattered: Trailing 4-0 in the sixth inning, the Barons began to battle back as a leadoff single from Joel Booker set up Basabe for a monster 402-foot, two-run homer on the next Birmingham at bat, cutting the deficit in half. The Barons would pull within one in the next frame asAlex Call and Alfredo Gonzalez led off the bottom of the inning with back-to-back doubles. A balk advanced Gonzalez to third with one out, but Birmingham couldn't find the hit it needed to level the contest.
By the Numbers: With his sixth-inning home run, Basabe extended his hitting streak to 14 straight games and is now closing in on former Baron Eloy Jimenez's league-longest 15-game hitting streak. Basabe is currently tied for the second-longest with Jackson's Ben DeLuzio and Rudy Flores. With two doubles on the night, Gonzalez has also improved his current hitting streak to 11 straight.
Turning Point: The Barons looked to completely capture the game's momentum in the top of the eighth after a 6-5-3 double play left a runner on second base. However, two consecutive Tennessee singles and a Birmingham error helped three insurance runs cross the plate as the Smokies took a final 7-3 lead.
Facts and Figures: The loss snaps a season-high win streak for the Magic City at four, while Tennessee breaks a nine-game skid with the win.
Up Next: The Barons and Smokies conclude the series on Friday night with first pitch set for 7:05 pm. Southpaw Bernardo Flores (2-2, 2.35) will toe the rubber for Birmingham, while Thomas Hatch (6-4, 4.05) will get the nod for Tennessee. Curt Bloom will have the call on 960 WERC News Radio and the iHeart Radio app.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.