Four Chattanooga Lookouts pitchers played a big part in Thursday night's 4-3 win over the Tennessee Smokies at AT&T Field.
Starter Aaron Miller had a two-run double, relievers Javier Solano and Luis Vasquez got the team out of jams and closer Steven Ames was dominant in the top of the ninth inning.
With the Lookouts (16-11 second half) holding on to a one-run lead over the Smokies (12-15), Ames entered the game in the ninth and ended it quickly. A first-pitch flyout was followed by a pair of strikeouts.
"I'm just trying to come in in the zone," said Ames, who earned his 11th save of the season. "I was mostly just throwing fastballs down and away."
The win was the Lookouts' fourth in five games.
Leading off the top of the second inning, Travis Denker belted a home run well beyond the center-field fence off Smokies left-handed starter Erik Jokisch.
"You're always looking fastball," Denker said. "Lefties try to throw the ball middle-away most of the time, and that's what I was looking for."
The next two batters singled before Smokies center fielder Jae-Hoon Ha saved a run with a leaping catch of a Jake Lemmerman line drive. Miller pushed the lead to 3-0 with a two-run double up the third-base line.
Miller had cruised through the first three innings but lost it in the fourth. He gave up a single, a double and a two-run double, which cut the Lookouts' lead to 3-2. Eventually Miller was pulled for Solano with the bases loaded and two out, and Solano got Junior Lake to fly out to end the inning.
In the sixth, the Lookouts got some help from Smokies reliever Casey Weathers, who walked the bases loaded after retiring the leadoff batter. Lemmerman brought a run home with a ground ball, beating out the throw to first to avoid a double play.
Red Patterson took over on the mound for the Lookouts in the seventh and lasted a third of an inning. Tennessee cut the lead to 4-3 on a Logan Watkins single. Sidearm slinger Vasquez came in and got two strikeouts to keep the Lookouts in the lead.
Chris Reed (0-1, 3.57 ERA) is scheduled to start on the mound tonight for the Lookouts, with Dae-Eun Rhee (6-4, 5.21) set to go for the Smokies.
John Frierson is in his fifth year at the Times Free Press and fifth year covering University of Tennessee at Chattanooga athletics. The bulk of his time is spent covering Mocs football, but he also writes about women’s basketball and the big-picture issues and news involving the athletic department. A native of Athens, Ga., John grew up a few hundred yards from the University of Georgia campus. Instead of becoming a Bulldog he attended Ole ...
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