And just like that, the Smokies are one win away from a Southern League championship with their 8-4 win over Pensacola! The last time the Smokies did come home with some hardware was way back in 2004.
The Smokies did not waste any time scoring eight runs in the first three innings and that was all they scored. They used a parade of hits, walks, and some good situational hitting to score 2 in the first, one in the second, and five in the third. Strangely enough, the Smokies, who led the Southern League in home, runs this year, did not have one tonight. Ezequiel Pagán had two RBI and BJ Murray had two hits while five other guys each drove in one.
On the mound, Brandon Birdsell was dominant in his first postseason start. He allowed four hits and gave up just one run in five innings while striking out five. Porter Hodge, and Riley Martin then came on and shut down the Blue Wahoos for a couple of innings. Zac Leigh came on in the night to close it out.
The Smokies are off tomorrow, but you have to like their chances, considering how their rotation is lining up. On Tuesday, Cade Horton looks to be the guy who could clinch it. If not, Walker Powell would come on Wednesday,if needed.
It is looking like the championship drought could soon be coming to an end, considering the mix of dominant hitting and pitching from the Smokies they have ben showing the past three weeks.