Biloxi manufactured a run without a hit in the 7th inning and Brandon Knarr led a pitching staff that struck out 12 Pensacola batters in a nerve-wracking 1-0 victory on the road, their seventh in a row.
Nashville’s stars, young and old, continue to shine bright, as Esteury Ruiz staked the team to an early 2-0 lead, Josh Lindblom dominated over six innings, and Sal Frelick extended his on-base streak to 32 games in a 6-1 home win over Jacksonville.
Thursday’s Game Balls go to the aforementioned Ruiz, Knarr, Lindblom, and Frelick, as well as Joey Wiemer.
- OF Tristen Lutz activated from AA Biloxi's 7-day injured list
- RHP TJ Shook transferred to Development List from AA Biloxi
Nashville Pre-Game Media Notes
Final: Nashville 6, Jacksonville 1
Box Score / Game Log
Via the Sounds’ website, game details, and we encourage readers to review each of the affiliate write-ups as part of their Link Report routine: Lindblom, Ruiz Lead Sounds to Another Win.
After some nervous hiccups last week and in the first game of this series, Nashville appears to be getting its groove back, leading from start to finish to grab a 2-1 series lead over Jacksonville
Frelick (2-for-5, RBI) led off the bottom of the 1st inning with a single to left field, then Ruiz (2-for-4, HR, double, 2 RBIs, SB) smashed an 0-1 pitch the same direction for a quick 2-0 lead.
Starting pitcher Lindblom (6 IP, 1 R, 5 H, 0 BB, 4 Ks) didn’t require any more cushion than that, walking none and only conceding one run in a 6th straight solid outing for him.
That said, it was still relatively tight at 3-1 when the Sounds finally put the game out of reach with a three-run 7th inning , highlighted by Ruiz doubling and stealing his 77th base of the year and DH/2B Pablo Reyes (2-for-4, double, 2 RBIs) doubling in two insurance runs for the final 6-1 scoreline.
Three Quick Strikes:
- Wiemer (2-for-3, walk) keeps humming along with stellar play, reaching base three times in this game. If not for one abysmal month when he was likely adjusting to an injury (wrist discomfort? We don’t really know), he’d be generating significant prospect buzz and we’d be wondering when he’ll be starting in right field in Milwaukee.
- Frelick’s on-base streak has now reached 32 games as he battles OF Jackson Chourio for the Brewers’ Minor League position player of the year award.
- The victory increased Nashville’s first place lead to 4.5 games over Columbus. Lest anyone think differently, Jacksonville is no slouch, as the Jumbo Shrimp only trail the Durham Bulls by 1.5 games in the International League’s Eastern Division. As such, there’s a chance these teams could actually meet again in the playoffs (knock on wood).
Friday’s outlook: 23-year old LHP Robert Gasser (5.23 ERA with 13 Ks through 10 1/3 AAA innings) will make his third start in AAA ball, as Nashville strives for a third straight victory.
Biloxi Pre-Game Media Notes
Final: Biloxi 1, Pensacola 0
Box Score / Game Log
Via the Shuckers’ website, game details: Biloxi Blanks Blue Wahoos For Seventh Consecutive Victory
Workhorse pitcher Knarr (6 IP, 0 R, 5 H, 2 BB, 7 Ks) apparently gets even better after surpassing 140 innings on the season, closing out an amazing 2022 campaign with six shutout innings and seven strikeouts.
However, he exited with the score tied 0-0 and the prospect of another No Decision, until 2B Yeison Coca put on a base-stealing clinic in the top of the 7th inning. Coca walked, stole two bases and scored on an OF Corey Ray sacrifice fly. The run gave Biloxi the lead and positioned Knarr for a well-deserved victory.
Pensacola certainly had its opportunities late in the game, getting two one-out walks off of LHP Clayton Andrews in the bottom of the 7th inning, but grounding into an inning-ending double play.
Then in the 8th inning, Andrews recorded two strikeouts and induced a ground out, but it wasn’t enough to escape as one of the K’d batters reached on a wild pitch. RHP Harold Chirino entered and the breach widened with a single and a walk to load the bases, then running the count full to put all runners in motion. Thankfully, Chirino came through to register a strikeout swinging to get out of that jam.
And in the 9th inning, RHP Zach Vennaro walked the first two batters he faced to give the Blue Wahoos yet another chance, but C Jason Lopez gunned down an attempted base stealer and RHP Zach Vennaro retired the final two hitters on strikeouts swinging to earn his 11th save.
Defensive gem alert:
Three Quick Strikes:
- This game marked the welcome return-from-injury of OF
- Tristen Lutz, who’d only registered two plate appearances since August 19th, the last being a hit-by-pitch on August 26th. The understandably rusty Lutz walked and struck out twice in this game before being relieved by a pinch runner in the 6th inning.
- Missing clutch: The offenses combined to go 0-for-20 with runners in scoring position, stranding 20 men on base. Kudos to the combined pitching staffs for striking out 25 batters and the catchers for eliminating three attempted base stealers. Further credit to the Brewers’ hurlers for keeping the ball on the ground: 12 ground ball outs vs. zero fly outs.
- OF Garrett Whitley (2-for-4, double) and Lopez (2-for-4, 2 doubles) each snagged two hits in the game, three of which were doubles. DH/OF Chourio went 0-for-3, but drew a walk and didn't strike out. Chourio is now 1-for-11 in three games at the AA level, with three more to go.
Friday’s outlook: RHP Justin Jarvis is scheduled to make his fourth start in AA ball (3.60 ERA through 15 AA innings), attempting to lead the Shuckers to an eighth consecutive win.
We hope that you enjoy the Minor League Link Report. Keep these winning streaks rolling along on Friday, Biloxi and Nashville!
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