Jackson, Tenn. - The Generals clubbed 12 hits en route to a 4-1 win over the Pensacola Blue Wahoos at The Ballpark at Jackson on Tuesday night. Jackson scored twice in each of the first two innings on six hits and never looked back. With the win, the Generals improved their record at home in 2016 to 19-7 just a year after going 23-44 at home in 2015.
With the win, Jackson (38-20) drops its magic number for clinching the Southern League North Division First Half Title down to three. Meanwhile the Montgomery Biscuits defeated the Biloxi Shuckers 6-3. The Generals own the tiebreaker over the Biscuits and lead them in the North Division race by nine games with 12 games left in the half.
Jackson jumped out to an early lead in the first over Pensacola (33-24). Guillermo Heredia drew a leadoff walk and advanced to second on a passed ball. The Cuban then scored on a Benji Gonalez double to left to make it 1-0. A couple batters later, Gonzalez came around to score on a Leon Landry single to left and the Generals led 2-0 after one.
In the second, Jackson saw its first four hitters all single consecutively to make it 3-0, before Tyler O'Neill drove in the second run of the inning on a sacrifice fly to right. After two innings, the Generals led 4-0 against Blue Wahoos' starter Sal Romano (1-6. 4.90).
Dylan Unsworth made the start for Jackson, but was removed after just one scoreless inning and was replaced by Kyle Hunter (2-0, 2.54). The lefty tossed four scoreless frames while giving up two hits. Hunter, who ultimately got the win, also walked a pair and struck out three before being replaced by Ryan Horstman in the sixth.
Pensacola took advantage of the new pitcher Horstman in the sixth. With one out, Brandon Dixon drew a walk before the Blue Wahoos clubbed three straight singles to make it a 4-1 game. Pensacola only scored one in the sixth despite a walk and three singles.
The Generals meanwhile had their fair share of opportunities in the first six innings. After scoring two in each of the first two frames, Jackson stranded two in the third and the bases loaded in the fifth. Through the first six frames, the Blue Wahoos had six hits with five men left on base while the Generals had 12 hits and nine men stranded.
With runners on the corners and two outs in the eighth, Emilio Pagan entered the game in search of his team-high 9th save. The righty struck out Eric Jagielo to end the threat. In the ninth, Pagan gave up a walk, but also struck out the side to pick up his ninth save and cement the Generals' 4-1 win.
Jackson notched a dozen hits in the win, 11 of which were singles, but did strand 11 men on base. Eight of the nine Generals in Jackson's lineup recorded a hit, and the only one who didn't ended an incredible streak. D.J. Peterson went 0-for-3 with a walk on the night to end his Southern League best hitting streak at 17 games. Over the streak he hit .328 (22-for-67) with six homers and 14 RBI. However, due to Peterson's walk in the first, he extended his on-base streak to 18-straight, the fourth longest for the Generals this season.
Jackson looks to knock its magic number down to two Wednesday night against Pensacola. Jordan Priese (2-2, 6.30) is slated to start for the Generals against Rookie Davis (4-1, 1.66) for the Blue Wahoos. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 pm CT, and you can listen to all the action on the TJ Network (AM 1390, FM 94.1) and online via the TuneIn Radio App starting at 6:50 pm CT with the Generals Pregame Show.
The five-game homestand and series against the Pensacola Blue Wahoos concludes with another State Farm Agent Wes Harris Dollar Night! General Admission tickets, hot dogs, popcorn, Pepsi products and select beer are just $1 all night long, and fans can upgrade to reserved seats for $5!
Come watch the first-place Generals as they chase a First Half Division Championship and a playoff berth! To purchase tickets, call the team at (731) 988.5299, stop by The Ballpark or go online to jacksongeneralsbaseball.com!