The Chattanooga Lookouts bounced back from their deplorable extra-inning loss Monday to snap the Birmingham Barons season-high five-game winning streak Tuesday, 7-6, in front of 4,594 fans at Regions Field. It looked like de ja vu when the Barons tied the game in the ninth sending the contest to extra innings but Darnell Sweeney's two-run homer was the difference.
In a back-and-forth game that featured six lead changes, Sweeney's RBI single in the top of the second inning scored Alex Liddi from second base against starter David Cales giving the Lookouts an early 1-0 lead. Sweeney went 2-for-6 with 4 RBI.
The Barons took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the third on an RBI ground-rule double by Chris Curley and a run scoring single by Joey DeMichele against starter Freddie Cabrera.
The Lookouts would battle back to tie the game on two separate occasions over the next four innings, getting an RBI single by Alex Liddi in the fourth inning tying the game at 2-2. After Curley put the Barons back ahead with his second RBI single in the fifth, the Lookouts tied the game again at 3-3 on an RBI groundout by Sweeney.
After a Dan Black RBI single put the Barons back ahead 4-3 in the bottom half of the seventh, the Lookouts responded again taking a 5-4 lead on a solo home run by Scott Schebler and an RBI single by Corey Seager against reliever Brandon Hardin. Seager extended his hitting streak to 18 games going 2-for-4 while raising his average to .363
Schebler leads the Southern League with 26 home runs. He is now in a tie for fourth place among Lookouts' single season leaders for home runs and just three away from second place -- Harmon Killebrew with 29. Read Guy Curtright's recent article on Schebler and other recent former Lookouts. http://atmilb.com/1q0r92q
Undeterred, the Barons rallied to tie the game at 5-5 in the ninth as Chris Curley lined his fifth hit of the night to center, scoring Grant Buckner from third base.
The game remained knotted until the 11th where Sweeney capped a huge night with an opposite-field two-run home run against reliever Parker Frazier which put the Lookouts ahead 7-5.
Trayce Thompson crushed his team-leading 16th home run over the Regions Field scoreboard in the bottom half of the inning, cutting the lead to 7-6. However, Joey DeMichele struck out with the tying run on second base to end the game. With the loss the Barons fell to 57-71 on the season and 28-30 in the second half while Chattanooga improved to 53-73 on the year and 27-29 in the second half.
Although he gave up Thompson's 11th-inning solo home run, Blake Smith (1-4) threw two innings to pick up the win.
The Barons at Lookouts go at it again Wednesday night as RHP Chris Bassitt (2-0, 0.75) takes the hill against RHP Steve Smith (2-0, 2.77). First pitch is scheduled for 8:05 PM.