Sounds Drop Second Straight After Climbing to .500
Nashville, TN – Iowa’s Dan Vogelbach hit a grand slam and the Cubs beat the Nashville Sounds, 8-4, before 6,358 fans Wednesday afternoon at First Tennessee Park.
Joey Wendle wasted no time giving the Sounds an early lead. The second baseman belted a leadoff home run off Iowa starter Jake Buchanan in the bottom of the first inning. It was Wendle’s fourth home run of the season.
Nashville starter Eric Surkamp cruised through the first five innings but found immediate trouble in the sixth when Albert Almora Jr. started the inning with a single to center.Surkamp then issued back-to-back walks to Willson Contreras and Taylor Davis to load the bases. Manager Steve Scarsone turned to Ryan Brasier in relief with the bases loaded and nobody out.
Brasier struck out Arismendy Alcantara to start his day, but then Vogelbach lifted an opposite field grand slam to give the Cubs a 4-1 lead as the rain began to fall at First Tennessee Park.
Brasier struck out Juan Perez for the second out in the inning but then issued two more walks and allowed a run-scoring single to John Andreoli.
Buchanan settled in after the leadoff homer by Wendle. Nashville put runners at the corners with one out in the third but he worked out of the jam by getting Renato Nunez to bounce into a 6-4-3 double play.
Down 7-2 going into the bottom of eighth, the Sounds made noise and cut into the deficit. Max Muncy and Renato Nunez started the inning with back-to-back singles and quickly advanced 90 feet on a wild pitch.
Muncy scored on a throwing error by Cubs’ third baseman Logan Watkins and Nunez scored on a double by Matt Olson.
They squandered a golden opportunity to get more when they had runners at second and third with nobody out but couldn’t push any more runs across.
Nashville put two runners on in the ninth but Brandon Gomes got Jake Smolinski to pop out for the final out. Buchanan picked up his first win of the season and Surkamp was charged with the loss.
The series finale is set for Thursday night at First Tennessee Park. Right-hander Henderson Alvarez will start for the Sounds on a MLB rehab assignment. The Cubs have not announced a starter. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35pm.
The 2016 season is the Sounds’ 19th year in the Pacific Coast League and their second as the Oakland Athletics’ top affiliate. Tickets are available now by calling 615.690.4487 or by visiting www.nashvillesounds.com