Jackson, Tenn. - Coming off an 8-run, 10-hit series finale against Mobile, the Jackson Generals couldn't carry over the offense to the following night. The Tennessee Smokies snuck past Jackson in the opener of a five-game series 4-2, marking their 12th win against the Generals this year.Tennessee right-hander Duane Underwood Jr.
Jackson, Tenn. - Coming off an 8-run, 10-hit series finale against Mobile, the Jackson Generals couldn't carry over the offense to the following night. The Tennessee Smokies snuck past Jackson in the opener of a five-game series 4-2, marking their 12th win against the Generals this year.
Tennessee right-hander Duane Underwood Jr. (10-5, 4.54 ERA) finished seven innings in his longest start of the year, holding Jackson to a pair of runs on five hits. Generals righty Taylor Clarke (9-7, 2.91 ERA) dropped the decision despite his ninth quality start of the season.
Close to finishing a fourth July outing with at least six innings pitched and two or fewer runs allowed, Clarke was done in by a seeing-eye single. David Bote and Jason Vosler led off the sixth frame with a pair of singles, putting Clarke under pressure. Ian Rice, the next hitter, grounded a comebacker right to Clarke, who fired to Vladimir Frias at second base to begin the turning of an unlikely double play. Unfortunately for Clarke, Bote moved to third base on the play, and well-placed grounder by Charcer Burks found a hole through the left side to bring Bote home for a 3-1 Tennessee lead. Clarke finished the frame by inducing a groundout. He allowed seven hits in total, walking a season-high four batters while striking out only one.
The Generals used back-to-back doubles off Underwood by Jose Queliz and Victor Reyes in the seventh inning to close within a run. The Smokies were able to insure themselves in the eighth by scoring on a bases-loaded wild pitch, and Tennessee reliever David Garner (S, 1) struck out the side in the ninth to end it. Underwood allowed five hits while walking three and striking out four in the victory, his fourth against Jackson this season. He had not finished seven innings prior to Sunday night.
Tennessee got on the board first with two runs in the second inning, as Clarke allowed three straight singles and a sacrifice fly to the visitors. Clarke retired the next two hitters and went on to face one batter above the minimum over the next 3 frames, helped out by a pair of double plays and a runner caught stealing by catcher Michael Perez.
Jackson broke through in the fourth inning after a leadoff walk to Kevin Cron, increasing his career-best single-season total to 48. Jamie Westbrook followed with a single to put Cron on second, and Kelly Dugan singled home Cron to make the score 3-1. Underwood struck out the next hitter and got a groundball double play to limit the damage.
Dugan finished with a pair of hits, an RBI, and a walk against the team he played for in 2016. Drew Muren and Mason McCullough each worked scoreless appearances for the Generals.
Jackson's ten-game homestand continues Monday with the second of five against division-rival Tennessee. Brad Keller (7-7, 4.64 ERA) goes for the Generals, opposing righty Preston Morrison (1-9, 5.25 ERA) for the Smokies. The action begins at 6:05 pm CT at The Ballpark at Jackson. Fans can follow along starting at 5:50 pm CT on Willie 94 FM & 1390 AM!
Bidding is open now for Jackson's special Shark Week jerseys that the team wore Saturday! Game-worn and signed jerseys are being auctioned off, with proceeds going to JACOA! Bid online at generals.milbauctions.com.
All five games against the Smokies start at 6:05 pm locally! The series wraps up with a Thrifty Thursday on August 3. Fans can get general admission tickets, hot dogs, popcorn, soda, beer, ice cream and access to the fun zone for $2 all night long! Reserved seats are just $6 as well!
Make sure to get your tickets now to see the 20th season of professional baseball in Jackson, and the first for the team as an affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks! Call the team at (731) 988.5299, stop by The Ballpark or go online to jacksongeneralsbaseball.com to secure your seats now!