The Chattanooga Lookouts will need to do a better job of spacing out their runs moving forward.
Chattanooga lost to Huntsville for a fourth time in five games Monday night at AT&T Field, dropping a 3-2 decision before an announced crowd of 4,975. The Lookouts outscored the Stars 20-18 in the five-game set, largely because of their 8-0 victory in the first game of Sunday's doubleheader.
"You look at this series, and things could have been completely reversed," Lookouts manager Jody Reed said. "We allowed some things to happen, and you've got to be accountable for what you're doing out on that field, but very easily things could be turned around. We're a good ballclub, but we're just a little snake-bit.
"A play here or a play there could have changed the outcome of two or three of those games."
Robinson Diaz's two-out single to left-center field off Greg Infante in the seventh inning scored Kentrail Davis and Brock Kjeldgaard to provide the difference for the Stars.
The Lookouts had a chance to make some noise in the bottom of the seventh when Yasiel Puig doubled to right with two out and Rafael Ynoa on first base. Reed signaled for Ynoa to hold at third, but Ynoa kept going and was easily out at the plate.
"We're here to learn the game, and we're going to make mistakes," Reed said. "This is part of the growing process and developmental process. He came up and said, 'My bad. I wanted to score so bad that I put my head down and ran.'
"It happens, but it will never happen to him again."
Puig, who signed a $42 million, seven-year contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers last summer, went 7-for-13 (.538) in his opening series with the Lookouts.
Chattanooga scored in the first inning in each of its first four games and continued that trend Monday with a pair of runs. Joc Pederson doubled to left with one out and scored on Blake Smith's infield hit, and Puig reached on an infield hit and scored on a C.J. Retherford groundout.
Onelki Garcia pitched three hitless innings before Jason Rodgers opened the fourth with a home run to left-center that pulled the Stars within 2-1. That would be the only hit that Garcia, the No. 7 prospect in the Dodgers organization, allowed in 53 pitches over four innings.
"He's been coming off a knee injury, and we've been making sure his conditioning gets up to where he can go his normal six or seven innings," pitching coach Hector Berrios said. "We were very pleased with how he threw. He just makes it look so easy. Once he's healthy, you're going to see the real kid come out."
The Lookouts are off today before traveling to Tennessee on Wednesday for the beginning of a five-game series. Zach Lee (0-0, 2.25 ERA) is the scheduled starting pitcher in the opener for the Lookouts, with Dallas Beeler (0-1, 6.75) scheduled for the Smokies.
David Paschall is a sports writer for the Times Free Press. He started at the Chattanooga Free Press in 1990 and was part of the Times Free Press when the paper started in 1999. David covers University of Georgia football, as well as SEC football recruiting, SEC basketball, Chattanooga Lookouts baseball and other sports stories. He is a Chattanooga native and graduate of the Baylor School and Auburn University. David has received numerous honors for ...