KODAK - The bats came alive in an 8-2 Tennessee Smokies (53-78, 20-42) win over the Birmingham Barons (59-69, 32-27) at Smokies Stadium on Saturday night. Vimael Machin led the pack, going 2-for-5 with a pair of RBIs and a home run.
Neither side budged through the first four innings, but in the top of the fifth Birmingham drew first blood on a two-out, two-strike RBI-double from Luis Basabe to put the Barons up 1-0.
Connor Myers and the Smokies responded immediately in their next at-bat. A pair of singles got things started, and then Myers laid down a bunt which was complimented by a throwing error from third baseman Ti'Quan Forbes to score both runners. The inning wrapped up with a pair of RBIs from Machin's single and Zack Short's double, running the lead up to 4-1.
LHP Bernardo Flores (L, 3-8) surrendered a season worst ten hits over six innings in the loss.
Smokies LHP Luis Lugo (W, 6-0) finished with a quality start dealing six innings and allowing a run on four hits while tying his season high in strikeouts with seven. The journeyman has punched out six or more batters in each of his last five starts.
Down to their final out in the seventh, the Smokies needed just five pitches to string four singles together and a pair of runs added to their lead. Jared Young knocked in his fifth run across in his last six games. Machin put the final nail in the coffin in the ninth when he deposited a ball over the right field wall for his sixth homer of the season which is tied for the most on the team.
RHP Cory Abbott (6-8, 3.38) and his team high 150 strikeouts takes the mound for the Smokies against LHP John Parke (3-3, 2.55) for the Barons Sunday evening. First pitch on Fan Appreciation Night is scheduled for 5:30 pm EDT at Smokies Stadium.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.