Third baseman BJ Murray in action in this file photo.
#By BRENT STUBBS
#Senior Sports Reporter
#After sweeping the Chattanooga Lookouts in their best-of-three playoffs last week, Bahamian third baseman BJ Murray and the Tennessee Smokies moved one away from duplicating the feat in the Minor League Baseball’s Double A Southern League Championships.
#Murray and the Smokies, playing on their home field at the Smokies Stadum in Kodak, Tennessee on Sunday, doubled up the Pensacola Blue Wahoos 8-4 to snatch a 1-0 lead in the championship series. In that game, Murray went 2-for-4 with a run batted in (RBI) and scored a pair of runs for a .400 average.
#“It feels good to be in this position with my teammates and friends,” said Murray after the game. “We want to win and I think we showed that in game one.”
#With the team on the road travelling yesterday, they will prepare for game two of the series today at the Blue Wahoos Stadium in Pensacola, Florida. If necessary, the third and deciding game will take place on Wednesday again in Pensacola, Florida.
#“We’re going out there and going to play the same game we’ve played all year,” Murray said. “We are going to go out there, play hard, have fun and let the rest take care of itself.”
#In advancing to the championship, Murray and the Smokies swept the Chattanooga Lookouts 2-0 in their best-of-three playoff series last week. They won 5-1 in the clincher on Thursday, September 21 after taking game one 3-1 as they played both games on the road at the AT^T Park in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
#“It felt good,” said Murray about the sweep of their playoffs series. “We wanted to win in two games and we played like we did.”
#Batting second in the line-up, Murray went 0-for-3 with a walk, a strike out and a run batted in for a .333 average in game two on Thursday, September 21.
#He enjoyed a 2-for-3 outing with a walk, a RBI and a run scored for a .667 average in the opener on Tuesday, September 19.
#The 23-year-old 5-foot, 10-inch Murray Jr, who was drafted in round 15 with the 454th pick overall by the Cubs in the 2021 Major League Draft, has produced 452 at-bats with 119 hits, 16 home runs, 14 stolen bases, 74 RBI and 71 runs for an .263 average.
#“I’m feeling good about it. I still got a game, maybe two left to play, so I’ve got to keep it rolling,” said Murray about his individual stats. “I want to get better at everything so I’m going to work on every aspect of the game.”
#Murray, who played and won his first championship series last year in High-A, said he’s eager to see if he can duplicate the feat in his promotion to Double-A this year.
#“We got a good shot at winning and we all believe that, now we just have to go do that,” Murray summed up.