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Nashville wins a wild one against Memphis 7-6

April 23, 2009
Tim Dillard

RHP, Tim Dillard (3-0)

The Nashville Sounds won their sixth out of seven road games tonight in a wild one in Memphis by a score of 7-6. The Sounds are now 9-6 while the Redbirds fall to 8-6. That puts Nashville in sole second place in the PCL American North, behind streaking Iowa.The Sounds had to come back from a big deficit of 4 to 1 to win the game.

Nashville’s starting pitcher Tim Dillard (3-0) captured his third victory of the year though he had a rocky start. He pitched six innings giving up just two hits on four runs (three earned). Chris Narveson (NAS) worked 2 and 2/3 innings before being relieved in the bottom of the ninth by reliever Ryan Houston, who recorded his first save of the season, striking out David Freese swinging on a 90+ mph fastball (with bases loaded).

Memphis Redbird’s pitcher Blake Hawksworth (1-2) was pegged with his second loss of the season, working four innings and giving up six runs on six hits. Scherer followed Hawksworth and pitched very well, going three full innings on no hits and striking out three. He was relieved by Kinney who worked the 8th and 9th innings, yielding one run on two hits.

5,060 fans were in attendance at AutoZone Park for the long 3:12 minute battle between the inter-division rivals.

This game had a strange ebb and flow to it.

The first inning had a combined five runs scored. Memphis led 4 to 1 after one.  The Sounds took an early 1-0 lead on a Mat Gamel sacrifice fly, gaining his 20th RBI. The Redbirds came out and had a big inning, scoring four runs on just one Redbirds hit. The inning was plagued by Nashville miscues, including one hit batsman, one wild pitch and two walks. Shane Robinson led off the inning for the Redbirds and was prompting hit by Dillard with a pitch, probably retaliation for of Hawksworth striking Nashville’s Brendan Katin in the top of the first.  The miscue of hitting Robinson – if intentional – was stupid because he scored the first run and was the key to the inning blowing up offensively for the Redbirds.

The Sounds brought out the heavy lumber in the fourth inning as they scored five runs in that inning; on four hits. Gamel singled to right knocking in two runs (#21 and #22) and Katin got payback for being hit by a pitch in the 1st by also hitting a two-run RBI single to CF (RBIs 7 and 8 for Katin).

After the Sounds‘ 4th inning things settled down until the top of the 9th when Escobar scored on another single by Katin, picking up his 9th RBI of the season. Gamel and Katin, the 3rd and 4th hitters for Nashville, both knocked in three runs a piece. Katin’s 9th inning RBI proved to be the game winner though.

P4220072.JPG by you.

#39, Brendan Katin for Nashville

After the Redbird’s strong four-run start to open the game, Sound’s pitchers shut down the Redbird’s air power for seven straight innings, surrendering only one hit during that span. Dillard (3-0) worked through six innings and was relieved by Chris Narveson.

Memphis came to bat in the bottom of the ninth trailing 7-4. After giving up a lead-off double by hitter Joe Mather, Narveson appeared to settle down by retiring the next two Bird’s hitters. He failed to retire the next four hitters, giving up an RBI single (making the score 7-5), walking two batter successively before surrendering another RBI single by John Jay on a great play by Nashville SS Alcides Escobar who made a deep stop at short allowing just one run to score (now 7-6).  The play by Escobar was his second thriller of the game. He also made an incredible play in the 3rd inning when he threw out David Freese from deep-short on a leaping toss across his body as if the entire play were one motion. It was poetic.

Narveson was replaced by Nashville pitcher Ryan Houston with bases loaded and two outs. Narveson had two strikes on the previous four batters and could not retire the final out. Houston came to the mound to face the ever-dangerous David Freese. Houston’s first pitch was a 93 mph fast ball. Freese struck out swinging on a Houston fast ball to the end the Redbird’s rally.

The two teams finish up their first series of the season Friday evening. Probable starting pitchers for 7:05 Friday-start are LHP Lindsay Gulin (1-0, 13.00) for Nashville, while Memphis will counter with RHP Clayton Mortensen (1-1, 1.50).

April 23, 2009 7:05 PM CT
Final 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Nashville 1 0 0 5 0 0 0 0 1 7 8 1
Memphis 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 6 5 1
W: Tim Dillard (3-0); L: Blake Hawksworth (1-2); SV: Ryan Houston (1)
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