The Chattanooga Lookouts (11-17) allowed four runs in the first inning en route to an 8-4 loss at the hands of the Tennessee Smokies (16-13). The loss marks the Lookouts' fourth straight defeat and eighth of the season to Tennessee.
After allowing seven runs through the first three and a half innings, the Lookouts' offense began to chip away at the lead in the bottom of the fourth inning. Veteran Brian Cavazos-Galvez shot a double to left-center field to bring home the speedy Jeremy Hazelbaker who reached earlier in the inning on a walk. The Smokies answered Chattanooga's run in the fifth, but catcher Chris O'Brien hit his third home run of the season to make it 8-2 Tennessee.
Up six runs, the Smokies' offense tried to expand their lead, but the Lookouts' bullpen put forth a solid effort. Hector Nelo was the only reliever who allowed a run and the right hander struck out three batters. Craig Stem, Matt Shelton and Juan Gonzalez followed Nelo and combined to hurl three shutout innings.
The bullpen's staunch efforts opened up the door for a comeback attempt in the seventh inning. Facing new pitcher Ryan Searle, O'Brien led off the inning with a lead-off double. A batter later Ryan Adams stroked a single up the middle to put runners at the corners for Darnell Sweeney. The infielder then smacked a single of his own to plate O'Brien and cut the lead down to five. Ozzie Martinez brought home the team's fourth and final run when he drove in Adams on a ground ball to second.
The Lookouts threatened again in the ninth inning when Smokies' pitcher Hunter Cervenka dished out two walks, but Cavazos-Galvez flied out to center to end the game.
Sunday, Chattanooga looks to avoid the sweep when it sends right-hander Garrett Gould (0-4, 7.48) to the mound against fellow righty Corey Black (2-1, 4.50) on Bike to the Park Day sponsored by LiteSpeed Bicycles.
Notes: Darnell Sweeney snagged another hit to extend his hitting streak to 13 games...New reliever Matt Shelton has made two appearances with the Lookouts and has yet to allow a run.