By: Kyle Crooks / Jacksonville Suns
The Jacksonville Suns (28-34) will look to bounce back after yesterday’s nine-run defeat at the hands of the Tennessee Smokies (33-29) with a first pitch set from 12:05 p.m. ET from Bragan Field.
For a second straight day the Suns can grab a series victory over the Smokies. With a win it would not only clinch a victory in the five-game set, but also would earn Jacksonville their third-straight series win in the month of June. The Suns fell in four-straight series in the month of May, which led to finishing the month 9-20.
Tayler Scott (W, 2-1) earned the victory working in a pair of innings allowing one run (earned) on one hit while walking four and striking out one out of the bullpen. Austin Brice (L, 2-5) got the start for Jacksonville and he manufactured four innings relinquishing four runs (three earned) on seven hits while walking two and fanning five batters. The scoring would begin in the top of the first, when Jacob Hannemann led off the game with a triple that was followed two batters later by a Dan Vogelbach RBI single, that brought in the first run of the contest, and provide the Smokies with a 1-0 lead.
In the bottom of the third, it was Viosergy Rosa who tied the score after his sacrifice fly brought home Austin Brice who led off the frame with an infield single. In the first of the fourth frame, the Smokies started off with back-to-back home runs from Billy McKinney (HR, 1) and Stephen Bruno (HR, 2) that leaped the Smokies in front 3-1. With Wes Darvill on the third after a walk and an error on Viosergy Rosa, he would be brought home courtesy of Jacob Hanneman’s run-scoring double that made the tally 4-1. Flashing to the fifth inning, and Tennessee would bring nine batters to the plate and score four runners. A RBI double by Stephen Bruno made the tally 5-1. Next batter Darvill, then skied a RBI sacrifice fly to right field that brought in the Smokies sixth run. Holding a five-run lead, pinch-hitter Albert Almora Jr. generated a run-scoring base knock that scored Darvill and ballooned the advantage to 7-1. They would round out their four-run rally with Hanneman’s second RBI double of the day, to make the score 8-1 through five frames at Bragan Field.
The Suns clawed closer in the last of the sixth, when Kenny Wilson lashed a RBI single that scored Danny Black after Black’s walk started the frame. Jacksonville trailed 8-2. To the seventh, and the bases full with Suns reliever Casey McCarthy on the mound, Hanneman (HR, 2) blasted a grand slam to push the Smokies scoreboard edge to 12-2. In the last of the seventh Matt Juengel (HR, 11) continued his hot power stretch with a solo shot over the left field wall creeping the Suns to within a 12-3 deficit. In the bottom of the ninth, with the Suns batting, rain would situate over Bragan Field and call the contest early with a 12-3 final. Chipper Smith saw time out of the Suns bullpen tossing a solo inning surrendering four runs (all earned) on three hits while walking three and striking out one. Casey McCarthy worked two and two-thirds innings while being tagged for four runs (all earned) on five hits. Bullpen arm Blake Logan manufactured a scoreless inning and a third.
Today’s pitching matchup will feature Jacksonville right-hander Trevor Williams taking the ball 3-6 with a 4.21 ERA in 12 starts. He was pre-noted as the Marlins eighth-best prospect according to Baseball America, and has started to show why over his last five starts. Since picking up his first career double-A victory on 5/24 against Mississippi, he’s lasted at least six innings in three-straight starts while relinquishing only three runs. His last trip to the hill came against Pensacola on 6/9, in which he twirled six and two-thirds innings allowing one earned run on five hits while walking one and striking out six for his third winning decision of the year. The 23 year-old is a former second round draft pick of the Marlins in 2013 out of Arizona State University.
For Tennessee righty Jacob Turner will be making his second major-league rehab start for the Cubs. His prior trip to the hill came on 6/9 against the Birmingham Barons, in which he would last four frames surrendering two runs (both earned) on three hits while walking a solo batter and striking out four. He’s been dealing with an elbow issue that has forced him to sit out the start of the year with the big club. Acquired from the Marlins last August, the 23-year-old former top-10 draft pick is out of minor-league options and must be kept on the 25-man roster to avoid putting him on waivers. The Cubs via a trade with the Miami Marlins originally acquired him in August of 2014.
Fans can listen to the game live on the Suns Baseball Network, with Roger Hoover providing play by play. Roger Hoover and Kyle Crooks will host a special “Suns Sunday” edition of the Memorial Hospital Suns Pre-Game Show beginning at 11:35 a.m. ET on the Suns Baseball Network.
Sunday afternoon is also a special 12:05 matinee and it’s Winn-Dixie Day & Pet Friendly Weekend! On this day $10 parking will be available only in Lot P & Lot X for Suns fans and be sure to stop by your local Winn-Dixie for free tickets while supplies last! Plus it’s the last day for Pet Friendly Weekend and all dogs get in for just $2.50, sponsored by Pedigree!
The 2015 season of Suns baseball is presented by EverBank, the official banking partner of the Jacksonville Suns. Sponsorships, group outings, and season/individual game tickets are currently available by calling the Suns front office at (904) 358-2846.
Matchup: Tennessee Smokies (33-29) @ Jacksonville Suns (28-34)
Starters: PEN: RHP Jacob Turner (0-1, 4.50 ERA) vs. JAX: RHP Trevor Williams (3-6, 4.21 ERA)
Who’s Hot: Carlos Lopez has hit safely in thirteen of his last fourteen games and during that stretch has manufactured a .340 average (18-for-53). Matt Juengel blasted his eleventh home run of the season in yesterday’s loss. The right-handed slugger is hitting .412 in his last 10 games with four home runs and 10 RBI. Sharif Othman has collected a hit in six of his last seven games while batting 9-for-26 (.346) at the plate.
Suns Spots: Here’s a note from the official Jacksonville Suns game notes:
-Closer Sean Donatello is first in saves (14) in the Southern League. Zack Cox rests fourth in batting average (.322) while Matt Juengel is tied in third in home runs (11), and rest fourth in total bases (108). Viosergy Rosa sits second in walks generated (36). Kenny Wilson is tied for first in games played (60). Jake Esch is fourth in fewest baserunners/ 9IP (9.90) and fifth in average against for starting pitchers holding opponents to .215 average.