The teams had split the previous two games. The Astros took the finale 3-1 to win the series between the first- and second-place teams in the Appalachian League West Division.
Bailey Ober took the mound for the Twins and had a good start to the game, even though he gave up a pair of hits. The Twins’ offense was silent, though, as it went three up and three down. Pitcher Chad Denato made his Appalachian League debut and looked solid out of the blocks.
Both teams had chances to score early in the game, but the defenses were stellar and the pitching was on point. In the third, Elizabethton T.J. Dixon got to third before Wander Javier had a pop fly that was caught in foul territory.
In the top of the fourth, Roman Garcia homered to left field in a nearly identical spot that he hit a solo home run on Thursday night for a 1-0 Greeneville edge.
Little League double
Dixon started off the fifth-inning rally with a double down the third-base line and the ball rolled into the bullpen area before an Astros player could get to it. Dixon also shattered his bat on the play.
Mark Contreras was able to reach first on an error by the shortstop Brody Westmoreland. However, the rally was short-lived as the opportunity with runners on first and second was squandered when Javier struck out looking and Jose Miranda popped out to the catcher in the infield.
Greeneville pours it on, Twins strike back
The Astros opened up the lead to 3-0 on a two-run home run by Garcia, his second of the night and third in the last two games. Kolton Kendrick responded for the E-Twins in the bottom half of the sixth with a solo homer to right field over the scoreboard.
Twins cannot produce
Miranda had a single in the eighth and eventually reached second base when Kendrick had a single. Miranda and pinch-runner Ariel Montesino reached second and third on a wild pitch, but the Twins again missed on an opportunity to tie the game.
From the box score
Garcia was the lone Greeneville player with multiple hits, going 3 for 4. Miranda and Andrew Cosgrove both batted 2 for 4 for Elizabethton, which outhit the Astros 8-5.
Donato pitched five innings of three-hit, shutout ball for the victory, with Humberto Castellanos going the rest of the way to earn his first save of the year.
Taking over for Ober (1-1) in the sixth, Twins’ Rickey Ramirez threw 2 1/3 innings of scoreless relief before Jared Finkel pitched a perfect ninth.
The Twins travel to Johnson City for a four-game series with the Cardinals at TVA Credit Union Ballpark. Tonight’s first pitch is scheduled for 7.