From the Tennessee Smokies--
KODAK, Tenn. - Quality pitching by the Tennessee Smokies pitching staff lead to a doubleheader sweep of the Jackson Generals, 2-0 and 7-1, Monday night at Smokies Park. Kyle Hendricks led the way for the Smokies tossing a complete game shutout in Game One. The Smokies improved to 30-26 on the season, and six games behind first-place Birmingham with 13 games to go in the first half.
The Smokies wasted little time getting on the scoreboard off Generals ace Taijuan Walker. Matt Szczur led off the Smokies' first inning with a single, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Ronald Torreyes and scored a batter later on Arismendy Alcantara's RBI single to center to give Tennessee a 1-0 lead.
Tennessee would strike again in the fifth off Walker (3-6). Elliot Soto doubled to left field, moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Szczur and scored on a double by Torreyes to extend the Smokies lead, 2-0.
That would be all that Hendricks (6-2) would need to secure the Game One victory for the Smokies. The right-hander, who was named the Chicago Cubs Minor League Pitcher of the Month earlier in the day, tossed his first career complete game shutout going seven innings, allowing six hits, while walking one and striking out seven.
It was more of the same story in Game Two for the Smokies. With the game scoreless heading into the fourth inning, Torreyes led off the inning with a single and Christian Villanueva hit a home run off Jackson starter James Gillheeney (2-1), giving the Smokies a 2-0 lead. Ty Wright followed with a singled and Anthony Giansanti was hit by a pitch. Wright scored on a wild pitch and Giansanti scored on a single by Chad Noble to give Tennessee a 4-0 lead.
A.J. Morris, making a spot-start for Tennessee, allowed a run the fifth inning, but finished the night only allowing the run on two hits, walking two and fanning two in 4.1 innings.
Tennessee would extend their lead in the fifth inning when Rafael Lopez hit a pinch-hit-RBI double to score Torreyes from second to give the Smokies a 5-1 advantage
The Smokies added two insurance runs in the sixth. After a Soto walk and a Szczur single, Torreyes hit a two-run double to center field giving the Smokies a 7-1 lead.
Tennessee reliever Tony Zych (2-2) picked up the win for the Smokies allowing a hit, a walk and striking out one in 1.1 innings. Kevin Rhoderick finished the final 1.1 innings to pick up his second save of the season.
The two teams will continue their five-game series on Tuesday night at 7:15 at Smokies Park. RHP Yeiper Castillo (0-1, 4.66) will start for Tennessee and will be opposed by RHP Chance Ruffin (2-2, 2.72). For tickets and more information, fans can visit ww.smokiesbaseball.com or call 865-286-2300.