The Nashville Sounds got timely hitting and solid pitching in a 6-1 win over the Iowa Cubs in front of 5,930 fans at First Tennessee Park Wednesday night.
Matt Olson and Mark Canha crushed home runs and Corey Walter turned in a quality start to help the Sounds (33-30) even the four-game series at one game each.
Nashville used small ball to manufacture the first two runs of the game in the second. Canha walked to start the inning and sprinted to third on a base hit by Joey Wendle. Moments later, Wendle swiped second before Ryan Lavarnway plated Canha with a sacrifice fly.
Wendle was at it again when he stole third base without a throw. He raced home when Matt McBride lifted a sacrifice fly to right field to give Nashville a 2-0 advantage.
Olson wasted little time getting reacquainted to the lineup and launched his 16th home run of the season in the third to make it a 3-0 game. Canha followed suit with his sixth homer of the season to extend the lead to 4-0 in the fourth. The Sounds entered the game with 84 home runs as a team which was tied for first in the Pacific Coast League with the Fresno Grizzlies.
It was plenty of offense for Walter. The right-hander cruised through the first five innings without a hitch before yielding a run on a base hit by Jeimer Candelario in the sixth inning. He allowed one run in six innings and improved to 2-1 on the season.
Ryan Lavarnway and Matt McBride teamed up for a two-out rally in the bottom of the sixth. Lavarnway's two-out single moved Renato Nuñez to second, and McBride's triple down the left field line plated both to give the Sounds a 6-1 lead.
Lavarnway and McBride combined to go 4-for-4 with four runs knocked in to lead the offense.
Chris Jensen tossed two scoreless innings in relief of Walter, and Tucker Healy closed the game with a zero in the ninth.
Game three of the four-game series is scheduled for Thursday night at First Tennessee Park. Right-hander Paul Blackburn (4-5, 3.11) starts for Nashville against right-hander Williams Perez (0-7, 7.54) for the Cubs. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
The 2017 season is the Sounds' 40th in franchise history and their third 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.