Even after giving up three runs in the bottom of the eighth, the Birmingham Barons held on to win 5-3 over the Chattanooga Lookouts. The Barons extend their win streak to four games as shortstop Moises Castillo and a combined six pitchers get the job done in the first of
Even after giving up three runs in the bottom of the eighth, the Birmingham Barons held on to win 5-3 over the Chattanooga Lookouts. The Barons extend their win streak to four games as shortstop Moises Castillo and a combined six pitchers get the job done in the first of six games against the Lookouts.
The Barons struggled in their last series against the Tennessee Smokies to gain momentum early in games. The Smokies in all six of the games scored first, making it an uphill battle for the Barons. Tonight was different as Birmingham jumped out to the early 2-0 lead with the help of right-fielder Luis Mieses.
Mieses, with one-out and two on, reached base on a fielder's choice that would score second-baseman Alsander Womack from third and Castillo from second on a throwing error. Now with the early lead, the Barons knew they could not squander the earlier boost of confidence.
Castillo, who exemplifies confidence, took that as a challenge.
Ben Norman reached on the Lookouts second error of the night to get the top of the second started. Two-outs and two-batters later, Castillo walks up to the plate determined to keep the energy high for the away team. The Dominican Republic native saw a pitch destined to eclipse the left-field wall, and delivered it to where it was meant to land. Castillo finished the night going 2-for-3 accounting for two runs, with two RBI and a double.
Starting the game with two back-to-back innings of two runs each is a great way to kick off the game. Yet, it was the pitching for the Barons that kept them in control for the majority of it.
Birmingham’s starter LHP Garrett Schoenle gifted the Barons 5.0 shutout innings. Schoenle finished his night with five strikeouts and allowing only three hits. The left-hander would kick off the night from the bump to guide the way for the next five pitchers to take after his lead.
Ben Holmes and Yoelvin Silven were the next two in line, respectively, to take the mound. Both would finish the night with zero hits, zero earned runs and a pair of strikeouts from Silven.
The Barons were taking control of the game, and seemingly looking like they were going to coast the rest of the game. However, Chattanooga was not ready to let that happen so soon.
Southpaw Garrett Crochet took the mound for the eighth for his second appearance on his MLB rehab assignment. Crochet in his minor league debut on Sunday, April 30th, was efficient sitting the three batters he faced in order. However, the Lookouts had done their homework and were prepared.
Crochet let up three earned runs in his 0.1 IP paired with two walks and two hits. Despite the outing, Birmingham was able to bring in a sure hand to get out of the inning. Right-hander Nash Walters came in to continue his flawless start to the season.
Walters was able to get out of the jam in 10 pitches, and only having to face three batters.
After opening the door for a Chattanooga comeback, the Barons were prepared to respond with the player that had been doing it all night: Castillo.
In the top of the ninth, Castillo smacked a line drive double to center-field to place Norman on third with two-outs. Two batters later a wild pitch would get away from the Lookouts catcher, allowing Norman to walk in a crucial insurance run.
Now with a two-run lead, Birmingham brought in closer Caleb Freeman to do just that: Close the door. Freeman in three batters sat them down in order, striking out the final batter for the exclamation of the victory.
Castillo and company kept the winning streak alive bringing the Barons to 10-12 on the season, and out from last place in the Southern League North. Birmingham now sits third in the division and a mere two-games back from first place for the first time since April 23rd.
The Barons will look to keep momentum going as they face off against the Lookouts Wednesday at 6:15 p.m. CT, as Garrett Davila takes the bump.