07/09/08 — Mudcats

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Published in Sports on July 9, 2008 1:53 PM

Stefan Gartrell hit his second homer of the game in the eighth inning to snap a 3-3 to lift Birmingham past Carolina 6-3 before 3,853 fans at Regions Park on Tuesday night.

Gartrell hit a two-run shot in the first against Gaby Hernandez to help stake the Barons (13-8) to a 3-0 lead.

However, one day after the Mudcats (10-11) surmounted a six-run deficit against Tennessee, Carolina overcame the Birmingham lead and tied the game in the top of the eighth on a two-run homer by John Raynor.

The Mudcats were a flyball away from taking the lead, but Gaby Sanchez fanned with Smelin Perez at third and one out, then Andy Jenkins bounced out to short.

Gartrell drilled a 2-1 pitch from Matt Yourkin (L, 2-5) over the centerfield wall for a 4-3 lead.

Ex-Mudcat Javier Colina reached on an infield single, advanced on a two-out hit by Robert Hudson, then scored on a Yourkin balk. Lee Cruz doubled to left to score the third run.

Kyle McCulloch worked seven innings against the Mudcats, permitting one run on four hits. Hernandez, making his first Mudcats start since 2007, pitched six innings on six hits, walking none and fanning four.

The Mudcats fell four games behind first-place Tennessee.

Brett Sinkbeil (3-8, 5.63) starts at 12:05 this afternoon against Justin Cassel (7-3, 3.08).