Huntsville Rallies, Moves Back Over .500

Mat Gamel delivers game-winner for Huntsville, while West Virginia also rallies to improve to 14-5 in the second half of South Atlantic League.

Nashville

The key was getting off to a good start in the Sounds' doubleheader against Omaha on Tuesday night.

The Royals did it in game one and earned a 5-1 triumph, while visiting Nashville made noise in the first inning in laying the foundation for a split with a 3-1 decision.

Third baseman Adam Heether ripped a two-out, bases-loaded single to drive in two of Nashville's three runs that scored on what proved to be the game-deciding play in the first inning of the nightcap.

Lefty Lindsay Gulin (5-4) went the full seven innings, the only hit he allowed being a solo homer in the first. Gulin struck out six and walked only one in lowering his earned-run average to 2.89.

Center fielder and No. 2 hitter Tony Gwynn and Heether each finished 2 for 3.

Steve Hammond started the opener against a lineup that featured the top three batters in the order hitting above .300. He got in trouble right away in giving up three hits and a walk in the first inning for three runs, although he registered three strikeouts. In his first two Triple-A starts, Hammond had allowed 15 hits, including five homers, and nine runs in 10 innings for an 8.10 ERA. His numbers didn't improve as he finished three innings with five hits and six strikeouts and an 8.31 ERA.

Joe Bateman didn't fare much better, allowing the Royals two runs on a walk and three hits in two innings.

Left fielder Hernan Iribarren finished 2 for 3 and right fielder Brendan Katin stayed hot by going 2 for 3 as the Sounds banged out eight hits but couldn't put anything together in the seven-inning affair.

Huntsville

The Stars broke a scoreless tie with two runs in the fifth, scored twice in the eighth to regain the lead and then pushed across the game-winner in the ninth to post a 5-4 victory against Chattanooga.

Second baseman Mike Bell's seventh homer ignited the two-run fifth, Cole Gillespie and J.R. Hopf delivered RBIs in the eighth and leading batter Mat Gamel's second hit produced the clincher as the visitors improved to 11-10.

Lead-off hitter and right fielder Freddy Parejo led Huntsville's 14-hit attack with his 3 for 5 effort that featured two doubles. Gamel, shortstop Alcides Escobar, catcher Angel Salome and Bell contributed two hits apiece.

Southpaw David Welch allowed only one walk and three hits through five and finished with six innings of six-hit, two-run ball. Jason Shiell then got knocked around for five hits and two runs in two innings, but he improved to 3-1 as Juan Sandoval recorded his 10th save with a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth.

Brevard County

The Manatees fell behind 5-0 before recording an out and never recovered, dropping a 9-0 decision to Lakeland.

Lefty starter Rafael Lluberes (1-3) gave up five hits, including a homer, and five runs as his ERA ballooned to 6.86. Travis Wendte followed with two scoreless innings, but Alexandre Periard gave up two solo homers among six hits over the third through fifth innings.

Catcher Jonathan Lucroy's two-out single in the fourth and Yohannis Perez's two-out double in the ninth were Brevard County's only hits.

West Virginia

The Power (14-5) mustered only one run on three hits through seven innings and then rebounded for two runs on three hits in the eighth en route to a 3-2 triumph over Savannah.

Power starter Daniel Merklinger went six innings, allowing one run on three hits while striking out four. Corey Frerichs then gave up a run on two walks and two wild pitches in the seventh.

However, Frerichs (4-6) got the victory because Curtis Pasma struck out three in two scoreless innings to get his second save.

Offensively, West Virginia recorded six hits, including doubles from catcher Eric Fryer, third baseman Caleb Gindl and left fielder Steffan Wilson. The latter lined his 17th two-bagger one out after Gindl had registered his 24th in the fourth. Fryer's double to right scored center fielder Lee Haydel and second baseman Eric Farris--both had singled--for the deciding runs.

Meanwhile, Fryer has been selected the South Atlantic League's Player of the Week for June 30-July 6. He finished 15 for 22 (.682) during the week and 21 for 36 during the team's 10-game home stand, topping it off with his 5 for 5 effort during West Virginia's 16-1 spanking of Hagerstown on Sunday. He totaled six extra-base hits, including a homer, and knocked in 11 runs.

Helena

The Brewers fell behind twice only to tie the score, but that string ended when Idaho Falls tallied runs in the seventh and eighth in claiming a 4-3 victory.

Second baseman David Fonseca, who was hitting .212 at West Virginia and sent down to the Pioneer League, belted solo homers to left in the first and sixth and finished 3 for 4 with three runs scored. Center fielder Erik Komatsu was 2 for 4.

Left-hander Efrain Nieves allowed only one earned run and four hits while striking out six in his six-inning stint, which helped lower his ERA to 3.28. Garrett Sherrill (0-4) allowed two runs in two innings to get tagged with the loss, while fellow righty Nestor Corredor fanned two in taking care of the ninth.

Arizona

The Brewers slipped to 2-11 after dropping an 8-1 decision to the Angels, who sit in first place at 10-4. It was the Brewers' second defeat to the Angels, both by the same score.

Starter Luis Guerrero (0-3) also dropped his second verdict to the Angels, striking out four while walking four and allowing two hits and two runs in his two innings of work.

Ben Jeffers then got rocked for five runs on three walks and three hits in 1.2 innings, but three of the runs were unearned because of an error in the Angels' five-run fourth. On the plus side, Liam Ohlmann and Jose Sanchez continued to impress, lowering their ERAs to 1.42 and 1.50, respectively.

The Brewers totaled six hits with third baseman Allixon Cequea's double being the only extra-base hit. The visitors struck out 12 times


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