Smokies pitching struggles, bats can't get going in loss

April 14, 2018 10:01 PM

SEVIERVILLE - The Tennessee Smokies fell to the Jackson Generals on Saturday night 10-2. The Smokies pitching struggled early in the game and the bats could not keep up.


Oscar De La Cruz got the start for the Smokies and struggled for the second straight time. De La Cruz made it through just two innings, allowing six runs on six hits and striking out one. The Generals jumped on De La Cruz for one run in the first and five runs in the second. 


Preston Morrison replaced De La Cruz and threw a scoreless third and fourth, but Jackson tacked on two more runs in the fifth to go up 8-0. The Smokies got those two runs right back though as Trey Martin smacked hit first home run of the season into left field, after a Jesse Hodges single, to make it 8-2. 


Scott Effross, who picked up the win in Friday nights game, came in to pitch in the sixth inning and allowed one run but was effective in his two innings of work. Effross struck out three and allowed just two hits in his outing. The Smokies made a push in the eighth as Trent Giambrone hit a pinch-hit double and Zack Short walked with one out. After a fielders choice put runners on the corners, Eddy Martinez walked to load the bases with two outs. But, a Yasiel Balaguert popout to second base ended the threat. 


That was the way it went for the Smokies as their offense was stagnant for most of the game, totaling just five hits in the game. Hodges, Martinez , and Giambrone each totaled one hit while Martin had a single along with his home run. Starting second baseman Carlos Penalver pitched the top of the ninth for the Smokies and gave up one run to put the Generals up 10-2. The Smokies went down quietly in the bottom of the ninth.


The Smokies will be back in action on Sunday afternoon for a U.S. Cellular Family Fun Day as they take on the Jackson Generals in the final game of the series. First pitch is scheduled for 2:00 p.m. The Smokies will bring Michael Rucker to the mound to start while the Generals will counter with Justin Donatella. 


The full schedule for this season and information regarding single-game tickets, season tickets, and mini plans can be found online at, or by calling the Smokies Ticket Office at 865-286-2300.



The Tennessee Smokies are the Double-A affiliate of the 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

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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