Tim Dillard tossed seven stellar innings on his 36th birthday and infielder Nick Solak drilled a pair of home runs to lead the Nashville Sounds to a 6-5 win over the Iowa Cubs in front of a sellout crowd of 10,975 at First Tennessee Park Friday night.
In Dillard’s third appearance in the last seven days, he limited the Cubs to two runs on five hits. He issued one walk and struck out four in his sixth win of the year.
The offense helped Dillard with four home runs – two from Solak in his First Tennessee Park debut, and one each from Andy Ibanez and Patrick Wisdom. Ibanez started the power display right away in the bottom of the first when he lined a pitch from Matt Swarmer into the left field seats to give the Sounds a 1-0 lead.
Solak’s monster game started in the second when he launched a ball off the batter’s eye to make it a 2-0 game. Patrick Wisdom followed and drilled a homer off the light tower in left-center field to give the Sounds back-to-back home runs and a 3-0 lead.
In his first game back with Nashville since being optioned by Texas on July 16, Willie Calhoun contributed RBI doubles in the second and sixth innings. His second of the night extended Nashville’s lead to 5-1.
Dillard was dialed in for much of the night. Iowa’s Phillips Evans started the top of the seventh with a triple and scored on Jim Adduci’s RBI groundout to make it a 5-2 game.
Reliever Wei-Chieh Huang was summoned for the eighth inning and trouble started immediately. Dixon Machado doubled, Donnie Dewees doubled, and Zack Short hit a two-run homer to trim Iowa’s deficit to 6-5.
Miguel Del Pozo relieved Huang and shut down the threat. Closer David Carpenter took the ninth and fired a 1-2-3 inning with a pair of strikeouts to convert his 15th save in as many opportunities.
Game two of the three-game series is scheduled for Saturday night at First Tennessee Park. Right-hander Seth Maness (5-3, 5.55) starts for Nashville against right-hander Colin Rea (11-2, 3.17) for Iowa. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
– With tonight’s 6-5 win, the Sounds improved to 41-57 in 2019.
– Nick Solak and Patrick Wisdom hit back-to-back home runs in the second inning. It was the third time a pair of Nashville teammates went back-to-back this year.
– Solak went 3-for-4 with a pair of home runs in his First Tennessee Park debut. It’s Solak’s fifth multi-homer game of his career and third in 2019.
– The Sounds hit four home runs to match a season-high. It’s the fifth time the Sounds have hit four home runs in a game this year. Nashville is 19-16 when hitting at least two home runs.
The 2019 season is the 42nd in Nashville Sounds franchise history and first as the Triple-A affiliate of the Texas Rangers. Single-game tickets are available now by calling (615) 690-4487 or by visiting www.nashvillesounds.com.