[Via email from the Montgomery Biscuits' broadcaster Jon Laaser.]
Lucas Harrell dominated for eight innings as the Biscuits were stymied, 6-1, by the Birmingham Barons on Saturday night at Regions Park. The Barons have taken the first two games of the series and six of the first seven meetings between the two clubs.
The Barons got on the board against Biscuits' starter Brandon Mann immediately in the first inning. Jordan Danks swatted the first pitch of the ballgame to centerfield for a leadoff single. He advanced to third on a Tyler Flowers' double off the wall in right field and scored to make it 1-0 when Dayan Viciedo grounded out to Drew Anderson at second base.
Birmingham added a pair of runs off Mann in the second, all the damage done with two outs. After retiring the first two batters of the inning, Mann hit C.J. Retherford with a breaking ball. C.J. Lang followed with a single and Jordan Danks ripped a triple into the right-center field gap to clear the bases, increasing the Barons lead to 3-0.
Mann (4-3) conceded two more runs as the Barons scored for the third consecutive inning in the third. Flowers led off with a double to left-center field and following a walk to Stefan Gartrell and a single for David Cook, the bases were loaded. Javier Colina drove in two runs with a double down the third base-line for a 5-0 lead.
Meanwhile, Harrell (7-2) was cruising. He allowed just two hits, both singles for Rhyne Hughes, over eight innings. The eight innings were a season-high, while the two hits were a season-low. He won for the seventh time this season.
Mann departed after three innings, taking the loss after allowing five earned runs on seven hits. He walked one and struck out one, losing for the first time in three starts. Neal Frontz turned in three scoreless innings of relief after following Mann into the ballgame. He allowed two hits and struck out three.
Ryan Reid allowed a final run to score for Birmingham in the eighth inning, and the Biscuits trailed 6-0 heading to the ninth inning, having not scored a run in 23 innings. Jason Bowers finally put the Biscuits on the board, when he tripled home Desmond Jennings in the top of the ninth inning to cap the scoring, 6-1.
Game three of the series is scheduled for Sunday afternoon at 2:05 PM. RHP Heath Rollins (5-4, 4.33) will make the start for Montgomery against RHP John Ely (6-1, 3.58) for Birmingham.