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Murray comes through for the Smokies

Coming off a two-hit game in the first game of the Minor League Baseball (MiLB) Double A Southern League Championship series against the Pensacola Blue Wahoos, Bahamian minor league player Bertram ‘BJ’ Murray finished with a home run and four runs batted in (RBIs), leading his team, the Tennessee Smokies, to a 10-3 victory, on Tuesday. The Smokies swept the championship series two games to none.

It was the Smokies, a Chicago Cubs’ affiliate, first outright Southern League title in 45 years. They lost to the Wahoos last season.

Playing on the road at the Blue Wahoos Stadium in Pensacola, Florida, the third baseman finished the game 1-for-4 with a three-run home run. His only hit of the game came in the top of the third inning with the game tied 1-1. With the count at 2-2, and first and second occupied with Matt Shaw and Andy Weber respectively, the Bahamian sent the ball to the right side of the field and over the fence. That hit put the Smokies up 4-1.

Murray got his fourth RBI of the night three innings later on a sacrifice fly to right field. He brought home Weber. The Smokies went up 7-1 at that point. They scored four runs in that inning and took a 9-1 lead. The Wahoos scored one run in the bottom of the sixth inning. It was not nearly enough as the Smokies completed their revenge.

The winning pitcher was the Smokies’ Cade Horton while the losing pitcher was Luis Palacios.

The Smokies won the first game 8-4 on Sunday.

Murray was sensational for the Smokies in the postseason, turning in a batting average of .357. He went 5-for-14 at the plate in four games. He finished with one home run and seven RBIS to go with four runs scored. His on-base percentage (OBP) was .412 and his slugging percentage (SLG) was .643 for an on-base plus slugging percentage (OPS) of 1.055.

The Bahamian was featured in 124 games this season and came away with a batting average of .263. It was his first season in Double A and he was able to come away with 74 RBIs and 16 home runs. Murray was able to score 71 runs and had an OBP of .382, and SLG of .462 for an OPS of .844.

The 23-year-old just completed his second full year in the minors and has shown that he is someone to keep an eye on. He is the Cubs’ number 18 prospect.