Nashville, TN – The Nashville Sounds plated four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning, capped by Mat Gamel’s walkoff two-run homer, to record an exciting 4-3 victory over the visiting New Orleans Zephyrs in front of 8,211 fans on Saturday evening at Greer Stadium in the opener of a four-game series.
Trailing 3-0 entering the game’s final half-inning, all four Sounds batters who came to the plate in the ninth against New Orleans reliever Frank Mata scored as Nashville (34-42) picked up its seventh last at-bat win of the year and its fourth victory in a game it trailed in the eighth inning or later.Edwin Maysonet led off with a soft single to right and moved to third when Brandon Boggs doubled to right. Brett Carroll followed by plating both runners with a two-run single to center that made it a 4-3 contest.
The red-hot Gamel followed by hammering an 0-1 Mata fastball over the home run deck in right-center field for the game-winner, his team-leading 17th home run of the season.
With a 2-for-4 evening, Gamel extended his hitting streak to seven games. He is hitting .423 (11-for-26) over that stretch, the longest active streak by any Sounds player.
The late Sounds heroics wiped out a tremendous start by New Orleans right-hander Elih Villanueva, who turned in his best outing of the season but was left with a no-decision for his efforts. He held the Sounds to four hits, didn’t walk a batter, and struck out eight in eight scoreless innings of work.
Mata (1-5) failed to retire a batter and took the loss after suffering his third blown save of the year for New Orleans.
Sounds reliever Zack Segovia (3-3) was the beneficiary of the late rally, earning the win after tossing a scoreless inning.
Villanueva opened the scoring and helped his own cause by drilling a one-out solo homer to left off Sounds starter Sam Narron in the top of the third inning.
The roundtripper – the first of Villanueva’s pro career – was the first by an opposing pitcher against Nashville since Chris Narveson, then with Memphis, took Justin Lehr deep on July 4, 2006.
The visitors extended their lead to 3-0 in the fourth when Z’s center fielder Josh Kroeger smashed a hanging Narron curveball deep beyond the wall in right for a two-run homer. The blast, his 11th of the year, also plated Matt Dominguez, who preceded Kroeger with a single.
Narron, who departed on the short end of a 3-0 deficit but ultimately took a no-decision, worked his fifth quality start of the year for the Sounds, allowing three runs on five hits over seven innings.
The teams continue the series with another 6:35pm meeting on Sunday. Right-hander Amaury Rivas (5-7, 4.27) will make the start for the Sounds to face New Orleans right-hander Tom Koehler (5-5, 5.47).
Nashville Sounds (34-42) 4, New Orleans Zephyrs (38-39) 3
June 25th, 2011
None out when winning run scored.
|Martinez, O, SS||3||0||0||0||0||0||2||.245|
|Davis, B, C||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||.199|
2B: Petersen (17, Narron).
HR: Villanueva (1, 3rd inning off Narron, 0 on, 1 out), Kroeger (11, 4th inning off Narron, 1 on, 1 out).
TB: Petersen 2; Cervenak; Dominguez; Kroeger 4; Aguila; Villanueva 4.
RBI: Villanueva (2), Kroeger 2 (53).
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Dominguez.
GIDP: Martinez, O 2; Thurston.
Team RISP: 0-for-3.
Team LOB: 1.
|Green, T, 3B||3||0||1||0||0||1||0||.309|
|a-Grounded out for James in the 8th.|
2B: Green, T (18, Villanueva), Boggs (10, Mata).
HR: Gamel (17, 9th inning off Mata, 1 on, 0 out).
TB: Farris; Maysonet 2; Boggs 2; Carroll; Gamel 5; Green, T 2.
RBI: Carroll 2 (39), Gamel 2 (54).
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Boggs; Farris.
Team RISP: 1-for-4.
Team LOB: 4.FIELDING
DP: 3 (Green, T-Farris-Gamel, Farris-Maysonet-Gamel, Maysonet-Farris-Gamel).
|Mata (BS, 3)(L, 1-5)||0.0||4||4||4||0||0||1||4.95|
|Segovia (W, 3-3)||1.0||1||0||0||0||1||0||4.46|
Mata pitched to 4 batters in the 9th.
Pitches-strikes: Villanueva 103-67, Mata 10-10, Narron 93-64, James 11-7, Segovia 6-5.
Groundouts-flyouts: Villanueva 4-4, Mata 0-0, Narron 8-5, James 2-0, Segovia 1-0.
Batters faced: Villanueva 28, Mata 4, Narron 25, James 3, Segovia 3.
Umpires: HP: Darren Budahn. 1B: Chris Segal. 2B: . 3B: Mark Buchanan.
Weather: 88 degrees, partly cloudy.
Wind: 1 mph, In from CF.
Compiled by MLB Advanced Media