FRESNO, California - The Nashville Sounds began an eight-game road trip with a 4-1 victory over the Fresno Grizzlies Monday night. Catcher Bruce Maxwell returned from his stint with Oakland with a three-hit night for the Sounds.
Working his way back from Tommy John surgery, Chris Bassitt (1-0, 4.00) put together a solid start for the Sounds (16-18). Six days after making his Sounds 2017 debut, Bassitt made his first start for the ball club and cruised through a season-high five innings and needed just 62 pitches to do so. He benefitted from outstanding defense behind him. The Sounds turned a double play in each inning from the second through the fifth. The four twin-killings matched a season-high for Nashville.
Through three innings Monday night's game was a pitching duel. That ended when Matt Olson took Corey Coleman (1-2, 7.63) deep to give the Sounds a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth inning. One inning later, in his first game back with the club after a stint with Oakland, Maxwell smashed his first home run of the season to double the Sounds lead to 2-0. Franklin Barreto left his mark on the fifth inning with his 21st RBI of the season on a single to center field that scored Melvin Mercedes. Monday night's game was 14th time the Sounds launched at least two home runs in a game in 2017. They are now 10-4 in such contests.
In the fourth inning Maxwell added to the Sounds' lead with a base hit up the middle that scored Matt Chapman from second base. Chapman was aboard after recording his second double of the season.
Fresno (15-23) avoided a shutout thanks to a sacrifice fly from Preston Tucker off Michael Brady (2-1, 3.66) in the ninth inning but that was all the offense they could muster on the evening.
Maxwell added a lead-off double in the top of the ninth to secure his second three-hit game of the season. The Sounds catcher has now hit safely in four straight games for Nashville, which is a season-high.
Zach Neal (0-0, 4.02) picked up where Bassitt left off as he kept the Grizzlies' offense at bay. Pitching out of the bullpen for the third time this season, Neal went three and surrendered just a pair of hits while striking out a trio hitters. Neal has not allowed a run in all eight innings he has pitched as a reliever this season.
Between Bassitt and Neal, the Sounds snapped Derek Fisher's league-high 17 game hit streak. Nashville's Renato Nunez saw his six game hitting streak come to an end as well.
The Sounds play game two of their eight-game trip in California tomorrow night against Fresno Game one against the Fresno Grizzles is scheduled for Monday night at Chukchansi Park. Right-hander Jharel Cotton (0-0, 0.00) starts for Nashville against right-hander David Martinez (1-4, 6.47) for Fresno. First pitch is slated for 8:35 p.m.
The 2017 season is the Sounds' 40th in franchise history and their third as the Oakland Athletics' top affiliate. Season ticket memberships 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.