MEMPHIS, TN - The Nashville Sounds fell in an early 8-0 hole against the Memphis Redbirds and never recovered, losing 9-3 on Friday night at AutoZone Park in the opener of a four-game series. With only 10 games left in the season, Memphis is now one win or one Sounds loss away from eliminating the Sounds from playoff contention and clinching the American Southern division.
Jesus Luzardo gave up one run in the first and then labored through a five-run, 38-pitch second inning. Down 6-0 in the third, he retired his first two batters before a single from Lane Thomas and a two-run homer by Randy Arozarena made it 8-0. Luzardo gave up a career-high eight runs on eight hits in three innings in the loss. It was only the fourth outing this season in 23 starts he's allowed four-plus runs.
Anthony Garcia got the Sounds on the board in the fourth against Kevin Herget with a solo homer, his team-best 21st of the year. Trailing 8-1 in the seventh, the Sounds inched closer against reliever Conner Greene. Sheldon Neuse moved his hitting streak to 10 games with a two-out single and later scored on Jorge Mateo's RBI single. After Memphis got one run in the eighth against Chris Hatcher, Beau Taylor launched his third homer of the season with a solo shot in the ninth for the 9-3 final. J.B. Wendelken was a bright spot on the mound for the Sounds, retiring all six batters he faced, including five in a row on strikes.
The Sounds continue the four-game series and 10-game road trip Saturday night. Frankie Montas (4-5, 4.86) is scheduled to start for the Sounds, and Memphis will counter with Austin Warner (1-1, 3.33). First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m.
The 2018 season is the Sounds' 41st in franchise history and fourth as the Oakland Athletics' top affiliate. Single-game tickets are available now by calling (615) 690-4487 or by visiting www.nashvillesounds.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.