SEVIERVILLE, TENNESSEE - Chattanooga rallied for three-runs in the top of the ninth to beat the Smokies 5-3 and win the first half title in the North Division of the Southern League. Two of the three runs came on an errant Smokie throw and two-passed balls.
Charcer Burks hit a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the fifth to put the Smokies on the board and tie the game at 1-1. In the sixth, Andrew Ely scored on a pass ball and Jason Vosler hit his 12th home run of the season to give the Smokies' a 3-2 lead. Unfortunately, Tennessee wouldn't be able to scratch another run across the remainder of the game.
Smokies' manager Mark Johnson relied on the bullpen Friday night, as four Tennessee relievers saw action. Between James Pugliese, David Berg, Brad Markey and Ryan McNeil, the four allowed just one earned-run. Pugliese received the start, pitching 3.2 innings and striking out three. Markey struck out three as well in three innings of work.
The Smokies held a 3-2 advantage heading into the ninth, but it was all Lookouts from their. With runners on first and second Dan Rohlfing attempted to lay down a sacrafice bunt and advance both runners into scoring position. Yasiel Balaguert handled the bunt cleanly dispose the runner at third. The Lookouts scored two on the error, and hung on for a 5-3 win.
The Smokies are back in action tomorrow night as they square off with the Lookouts in game three of the five-game series. Jen-Ho Tseng is expected to take the mound for Tennessee, while Felix Jorge is expected to receive the ball for the Lookouts.
Tomorrow night will be Jimmy Buffett Tribute Night at Smokies Stadium. First pitch is set for 7 p.m. with the team sporting special themed jerseys presented by Margaritaville Island Hotel that will be auctioned off to benefit Alzheimer's Tennessee. Post-game fireworks will follow as part of the Summer Fireworks Series presented by Coors Light and Pepsi. The night will be capped off with a post-game concert by Stephen Goff and The Royals.
Prior to tomorrow's game, the East Tennessee High School All-Star Game will take place at Smokies Stadium, featuring players from Regions One and Two. The game is presented by Maryville College, Turface Athletics, Brandon's Award and Engraving, and GoTeez. Festivities will begin at 2:30 p.m.
ABOUT THE TENNESSEE SMOKIES
The Tennessee Smokies are the Double-A affiliate of the World Series Champion Chicago Cubs. Members of the ten-team Southern League, Smokies baseball has been entertaining families and fans of America's national pastime in the East Tennessee region for over 100 years. To learn more about the Tennessee Smokies, visit www.smokiesbaseball.com
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.