Monthly Archives: July 2016

Indianapolis Surges to End G-Braves’ Streak

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Pedro Florimon went 3-for-5 and scored twice, leading the Indianapolis Indians (54-52) to a 4-0 victory over the Gwinnett Braves (48-57) on Thursday night at Coolray Field. The shutout ended Gwinnett’s season-long seven-game winning streak.

Florimon singled three times and scored in the sixth and eighth innings, and Indianapolis added a pair of insurance runs in the ninth to avoid a three-game sweep.

The game was scoreless through five innings, with G-Braves’ starter Rob Whalen (L, 0-1) and Indians’ righty Frank Duncan trading zeroes. But Florimon led off the sixth with a single against Whalen and raced home on a double to left-center by Jose Osuna two batters later.

That was the only blemish on Whalen’s night, as the right-hander allowed four hits over 6.0 innings while walking three and striking out eight. He threw 64 of his 104 pitches for strikes in his first Triple-A loss.

Gwinnett had its best chance to tie the game in the seventh inning against reliever Dovydas Neverauskas, as Daniel Castro and Omar Infante each singled to open the frame, but Neverauskas got the next three hitters in order to keep Indianapolis in front.

Florimon led off the eighth with his third single of the night, stole second and scored on an RBI single by Josh Bell to double the Indians’ lead against reliever Bradley Roney.

Willy Garcia and Gift Ngoepe each hit solo home runs off Rob Wooten in the ninth to provide the final margin.

Rio Ruiz singled twice and walked in a 2-for-3 night, and was the only G-Brave to record a multi-hit game. Mel Rojas Jr. was 0-for-3 with a walk to snap a six-game hitting streak.

Duncan (W, 7-5) held the G-Braves to only four hits over 5.0 innings while walking four and striking out one. Neverauskas (H, 2) and Kelvin Marte (S, 2) tossed 2.0 innings apiece to close it out for the Indians.

The G-Braves hit the road for a quick three-game series in Toledo against the Mud Hens, with game one at Fifth Third Field set for Friday night at 7:05 p.m. Right-hander Roberto Hernandez (4-5, 4.33) will pitch for Gwinnett against right-hander Jordan Zimmermann (MLB Rehab, 0-0, 0.00) for Toledo. Tony Schiavone will have the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM at 6:35 p.m.

G-Braves Ride Homers To 2-1 Win

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Mel Rojas Jr. and Rio Ruiz each hit solo home runs and Aaron BlairĀ allowed just one unearned run over 6.0 innings to lead the Gwinnett Braves (48-56) to a 2-1 victory over the Indianapolis Indians (53-52) on Wednesday night at Coolray Field.

With the win, the International League South Division-leading G-Braves matched a Gwinnett team record with their seventh straight win. It’s the first time the club has won seven consecutive games since April 14-21, 2014.

Rojas Jr. and Ruiz each went deep against Indianapolis starter Ryan Vogelsong (L, 0-2). Rojas Jr. hit a 403-foot blast to right field to tie the game at 1-1 in the third, and Ruiz pushed the G-Braves ahead 2-1 with a 408-foot shot to right field in the fourth.

The homers erased an early 1-0 deficit after the Indians got on the board against Blair just four batters into the contest.

After Danny Ortiz reached on a fielder’s choice in the first, Ruiz couldn’t handle a hard grounder by Elias Diaz, allowing Ortiz to race to third base. Josh Bell followed with a broken-bat single up the middle, putting the Indians on top.

But that would be all Blair (W, 4-3) would yield in his outing, as the right-hander struck out nine and walked two while allowing only five hits. He threw 63 of his 100 pitches for strikes.

Stephen Janas (H, 5) struck out one in 2.0 perfect innings of relief and Maikel Cleto (S, 3) put the tying run in scoring position before working out of trouble in the ninth.

Ruiz also doubled in a 2-for-3 night and Rojas Jr. went 2-for-4 as the two combined for four of the G-Braves’ five hits. Blake Lalli‘s seventh-inning single was the other Gwinnett hit.

Vogelsong held the G-Braves in check outside of the two home runs, yielding only three other hits over 7.0 innings in his second rehab start for Indianapolis. He is working his way back to the Pittsburgh Pirates after being struck in the eye with a batted ball on May 23. Vogelsong threw 59 of his 83 pitches for strikes and struck out two while walking one.

Bell went 2-for-3 with an RBI and Willy Garcia was 2-for-4 for Indianapolis.

The G-Braves and Indians conclude the three-game series at 7:05 p.m. on Thursday night at Coolray Field. Gwinnett will send right-hander Rob Whalen (0-0, 2.13) to the mound against right-hander Frank Duncan (6-5, 2.58) for Indianapolis. Tony Schiavone will have the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM at 6:35 p.m.

Thursday’s game is another Triple Play Thursday. For $40, fans can purchase four (4) infield box tickets, four (4) hot dogs and four (4) sodas. Tickets for Thursday’s game are on sale now at the Coolray Field Ticket Office, call 678-277-0340 or visit GwinnettBraves.com/tickets to purchase.

G-Braves Pounce Early in 11-2 Win

LAWRENCEVLLE, GA – The Gwinnett Braves (47-56) jumped on top early and took advantage of some shaky defense by the Indianapolis Indians (53-51) in an 11-2 victory on Tuesday night at Coolray Field.

Gwinnett scored twice in the first inning and three times in both the second and third innings to build an 8-0 lead against Indianapolis starter Trevor Williams (L, 6-5) and cruise to its sixth straight victory.

The G-Braves were aided by three Indians’ errors over the first three frames, each of which either directly or indirectly allowed runs to score.

After Reid Brignac walked and Mel Rojas Jr. doubled him in with one out in the first, catcher Jacob Stallings dropped the ball on a throw to the plate, allowing Rojas Jr. to advance to third. Hector Oliverafollowed with a sacrifice fly to put the G-Braves up 2-0.

With one out in the second, Gwinnett loaded the bases on a walk and two singles, the latter coming on a well-placed bunt by starter Chris Ellis for his first professional hit. After Emilio Bonifacio singled inSean Kazmar Jr. and Brignac struck out, Rojas Jr. singled to right where Josh Bell bobbled the ball, allowing Daniel Castro and Ellis to score, pushing the lead to 5-0.

The G-Braves chased Williams in the third, plating three more runs on a double, a walk and an error by third baseman Alen Hanson, before Bonifacio picked up a two-run single off reliever Josh Outman.

That would be more than enough insurance for Ellis (W, 2-4), who labored through 5.0 innings to pick up his second Triple-A victory. The right-hander allowed only one run on one hit, but walked five and hit a batter and threw 57 of his 97 pitches for strikes. But Ellis did register seven strikeouts, his most in a start since April 8 for Double-A Mississippi.

Brandon Cunniff, Jose Ramirez and Rob Wooten combined to yield a run on three hits over the final 4.0 innings for Gwinnett.

Kazmar Jr. laced a three-run, inside-the-park home run off center fielder Danny Ortiz’s glove in the sixth inning, his first homer since April 13 at Durham and third of the year. He and Bonifacio each had three RBIs for the G-Braves. Castro, Kazmar Jr., Michael McKenry and Rojas Jr. each scored twice for Gwinnett.

Ortiz hit a solo home run in the seventh for Indianapolis, which saw a four-game winning streak snapped.

The G-Braves and Indians will play the middle game of the three-game series at 7:05 p.m. on Wednesday night at Coolray Field. Right-hander Aaron Blair (3-3, 4.53) will pitch for Gwinnett against left-hander Steven Brault (2-4, 2.15) for Indianapolis. Tony Schiavone will have the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM at 6:35 p.m.

Tickets for Wednesday’s game are on sale now at the Coolray Field Ticket Office, call 678-277-0340 or visit GwinnettBraves.com/tickets to purchase.

RailRiders Race Past G-Braves 9-3

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Tyler Austin homered and drove in three runs and Gary Sanchez also picked up three RBIs to lead the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (58-35) to a 9-3 win over the Gwinnett Braves (41-52) on Friday night at Coolray Field.

Sanchez got Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on the board with a first-inning sacrifice fly off G-Braves’ starterĀ Chris Ellis (L, 1-4) and capped a four-run second inning with another sacrifice fly as the visitors built an early 5-1 lead.

Gwinnett had tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the first when Emilio Bonifacio singled, stole second and scored on a one-out RBI single by Ronnier Mustelier. Ellis, however, walked the first two hitters in the second before the RailRiders strung together three straight hits to build a four-run advantage.

Austin hit a two-run single in a three-run fourth after Ellis had been chased from the game. Three innings later, Austin crushed the first pitch from reliever Bradley Roney deep to left field for his 10thhome run of the season.

Mel Rojas Jr. hit his fifth homer of the season with one out in the fourth and finished 2-for-4 with two runs scored to lead the G-Braves’ offensive attack. He raced around from second on a ball that didn’t leave the infield off the bat of Sean Kazmar Jr. in the seventh to cap Gwinnett’s scoring

The G-Braves managed only four hits after the first inning against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre starter Luis Severino (W, 6-1). The RailRiders’ right-hander allowed six hits and three runs in 6.2 innings while walking one and striking out three. He threw 72 of his 105 pitches for strikes.

Ellis lasted only 3.1 innings for the G-Braves, yielding a career-high eight runs on six hits while walking five and striking out two. The righty threw 37 of his 74 pitches for strikes.

Four Gwinnett relievers registered six strikeouts over the final 5.2 innings, including three by Roney over 2.0 innings.

Jose Rosario went 3-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Austin, Ben Gamel and Donovan Solano all registered two-hit games.

The G-Braves and RailRiders will play game three of the four-game series at 7:05 p.m. on Saturday night at Coolray Field. Right-hander Aaron Blair (3-2, 4.26) will start for Gwinnett against right-hander Luis Cessa (3-1, 3.22) for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Tony Schiavone will have the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM at 6:35 p.m.

The first 2,500 fans through the gates will receive a bobblehead of legendary Atlanta Braves’ slugger Hank Aaron, presented by Coolray Heating and Cooling. Following the game will be the Georgia 811 Diamond Dig, as 100 preselected guests will have the chance to “dig” for diamonds in the Coolray Field infield. Tickets for Saturday’s game are on sale now at the Coolray Field Ticket Office, call 678-277-0340 or visit GwinnettBraves.com/tickets to purchase.

Green’s Gem Guides RailRiders By G-Braves

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Chad Green allowed only one hit in 8.0 innings and Ike Davis hit a two-run home run to lead the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (57-35) to a 2-0 victory over the Gwinnett Braves (41-51) on Thursday night at Coolray Field.

Davis took G-Braves’ starter Casey Kelly (L, 2-5) over the wall in right-center with one on and one out in the sixth for the game’s only scoring, giving Green (W, 7-6) more than enough support.

The RailRiders’ right-hander yielded just a Rio Ruiz single with one out in the fifth over 8.0 otherwise perfect innings, throwing 77 of his 102 pitches for strikes. He struck out eight Gwinnett hitters and retired the final 11 batters he faced.

Kelly had worked himself into and out of trouble over the first four innings, stranding a combined four runners, but issued a one-out single to Tyler Austin in the sixth before Davis unloaded on his second homer of the season to put Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in front.

For the night, Kelly scattered seven hits and a walk over 6.0 innings while striking out five. He threw 54 of his 85 pitches for strikes. Ryan Weber, Eric O’Flaherty and Maikel Cleto struck out four over the final 3.0 innings for the G-Braves, with Cleto striking out the side in the ninth.

O’Flaherty, making his sixth appearance on a rehab assignment for the Atlanta Braves, saw the leadoff man reach in the eighth before getting a double play and a strikeout.

Pinch-hitter Blake Lalli worked a one-out walk against Kirby Yates (S, 2) in the ninth and eventually got to third, but Omar Infante flew out to end the game.

Pete Kozma went 2-for-3 with a walk and Davis was 2-for-4 with two RBIs to lead Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

The G-Braves and RailRiders will continue the four-game series at 7:05 p.m. on Friday night at Coolray Field. Right-hander Chris Ellis (1-3, 6.05) will start for the G-Braves against right-hander Luis Severino (5-1, 3.18) for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Tony Schiavone will have the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM at 6:35 p.m.

The first 2,500 fans through the gates will receive a poster of former Atlanta Braves outfielder Ron Gant, presented by Fox 5 Atlanta. Gant will be on hand to sign autographs during the game. Following the game, there will be a Fox 5 Fireworks Friday show. Tickets for Friday’s game are on sale now at the Coolray Field Ticket Office, call 678-277-0340 or visit GwinnettBraves.com/tickets to purchase.

G-Braves Edge Norfolk in Series Finale

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Sean Kazmar Jr. and Emerson Landoni struck for consecutive doubles in a three-run fourth inning as the Gwinnett Braves (39-48) earned a 3-2 victory over the Norfolk Tides (34-53) on Wednesday afternoon at Coolray Field.

The teams waited out a 1-hour and 6-minute rain delay with one out in the top of the fourth before the G-Braves caught fire to erase a 1-0 deficit. With the win, Gwinnett moved into a temporary two-way tie with Charlotte for first place in the International League South Division. The Knights (39-48) host Pawtucket at 7:05 p.m. on Wednesday night.

L.J. Hoes put Norfolk up 1-0 with a leadoff home run off starter Casey Kelly in the fourth. After the G-Braves’ right-hander struck out Trey Mancini, the skies opened and the game was delayed.

When play resumed, Norfolk loaded the bases against Ryan Weber, but couldn’t push across another run.

Ronnier Mustelier led off the bottom of the fourth with an infield single and after Rio Ruiz grounded out, Kazmar Jr. doubled off the base of the wall in left-center to tie the game at 1-1. Landoni followed with an RBI double down the right field line to put the G-Braves ahead.

Two batters later, Matt Lipka provided the eventual game-winning run with a sacrifice fly, scoring Landoni.

Hoes’ home run was the only blemish on Kelly’s ledger on the day as the right-hander allowed three hits in 3.1 innings while striking out four and walking none. He threw 33 of his 47 pitches for strikes.

Weber (W, 2-3) worked 2.2 innings in relief to get the win, allowing three hits and two walks while striking out one. Stephen Janas (H, 3) tossed 2.0 scoreless innings and Maikel Cleto (S, 1) allowed a run and put Tides’ runners on the corners with one out in the ninth, but got a pop-up and a strikeout to clinch the win.

Kazmar Jr. and Landoni each had two hits and scored runs for the G-Braves. Omar Infante singled and doubled in his Gwinnett debut.

Norfolk starter Andy Oliver had yielded only three hits over the first 3.0 innings before being lifted for reliever Scott McGough (L, 2-3) following the rain delay. The G-Braves had four hits and scored all three runs against McGough in the fourth. Michael Almanzar went 2-for-4 and Mike Yastrzemski went 2-for-3 with a walk for the Tides.

The G-Braves travel to Charlotte for a four-game series beginning on Thursday night at 7:05 p.m. Left-hander Manny Banuelos (0-2, 4.44) is slated to pitch for Gwinnett against right-hander Scott Carroll (2-6, 5.05) for the Knights. Tony Schiavone will have the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM at 6:35 p.m. from BB&T Park.

Pair of Homers Back Wooten in 3-1 Win

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Mel Rojas Jr. and Rio Ruiz each homered and the Gwinnett Braves (38-48) got another stellar start from Rob Wooten in a 3-1 victory over the Norfolk Tides (34-52) on Tuesday night at Coolray Field.

Rojas Jr. took Norfolk starter Joe Gunkel (L, 5-6) deep with two outs in the third inning for his first home run with Gwinnett. After Matt Lipka doubled for the G-Braves’ first hit of the night and Braeden Schlehuber flew out, Rojas Jr. crushed the 440-foot blast over the visitor’s bullpen down the right field line.

An inning later, also with two outs, Ruiz lashed his fifth homer of the year onto the berm in right-center to put Gwinnett up 3-0.

That would be more than enough for Wooten (W, 2-1), who scattered six hits and a walk while striking out four over 6.0 scoreless innings. Including his 6.0-innings of no-hit baseball in his previous start on June 30 at Louisville, Wooten has yet to allow a run in 15.0 innings over three career starts.

Norfolk threatened in the fourth inning when Christian Walker tripled with one out, but Wooten got a pop out and a groundout to end the inning. The Tides loaded the bases with one out in the sixth before Wooten struck out Audry Perez and got a grounder to first from Mike Yastrzemski to escape.

Xavier Avery led off the eighth with a solo home run off reliever Matt Marksberry (H, 5), but Brandon Cunniff (H, 3) retired the next three hitters to hold a 3-1 lead. Jose Ramirez (S, 5) worked a perfect ninth inning for his fifth save.

Ronnier Mustelier went 2-for-4 and was the only G-Brave to record a multi-hit game, while Ruiz homered for the first time since June 21 vs. Indianapolis.

Gunkel allowed three runs on seven hits in 7.0 innings while striking out seven and walking none for Norfolk. Avery was 2-for-4 with his home run and Walker went 2-for-3 for the Tides.

The G-Braves and Tides conclude the three-game series at Coolray Field on Wednesday afternoon at 12:05 p.m. Gwinnett will send right-hander Casey Kelly (2-4, 4.09) to oppose left-hander Andy Oliver (0-1, 2.80) for Norfolk. Dave Lezotte will have the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM at 11:35 a.m.

Wednesday is the second Daycare Day of 2016, presented by Belk. Tickets are on sale now at the Coolray Field Ticket Office, call 678-277-0340 or visit GwinnettBraves.com/tickets to purchase.

Norfolk Pounces Early in Shutout Win

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Christian Walker capped a three-run first inning with a towering home run and Trey Mancini had three RBIs as the Norfolk Tides (34-51) defeated the Gwinnett Braves (37-48) 7-0 on Monday night at Coolray Field. A season-high 9,682 fans attended the Independence Day contest.

With one out in the first inning, Paul Janish singled and Mancini doubled into the left-center gap to put the Tides up 1-0 on G-Braves’ starter Aaron Blair. Three pitches later, Walker blasted his 10th homer of the year to deep left field to make it 3-0.

Norfolk got two more against Blair in the second, doing all its damage with two outs. Ozzie Martinez started the rally with a single and moved to second when Xavier Avery was hit by a pitch. After Blair walked Janish, Mancini singled up the middle to plate a pair and put the Tides up 5-0.

The Tides tacked on single runs in the fourth and fifth innings, taking advantage of two Blair wild pitches.

Gwinnett managed to get runners on base in each of the first five innings against Tides’ starter David Hale, but couldn’t get on the board. Hale, a former G-Brave, allowed two hits and a walk in 3.2 innings in his first start back from a stint on the disabled list. Left-hander Edgar Olmos (W, 3-1) followed with 2.1 scoreless innings in relief.

The G-Braves loaded the bases against Olmos in the sixth with two outs, but Ronnier Musteliergrounded out to second to end Gwinnett’s biggest scoring threat of the night.

Blair (L, 3-2), who entered the game having not allowed a run over 13.0 innings at Coolray Field this season, yielded seven runs on 10 hits in 5.0 innings. He walked two, struck out six and issued three wild pitches. Bradley Roney (2.0 innings), Maikel Cleto (1.0 inning) and Jose Ramirez (1.0 inning) held Norfolk off the board over the final four innings.

Mel Rojas Jr. reached base safely four times (2-for-2, 2 BB) and Rio Ruiz doubled and walked twice for the G-Braves, who managed just six hits on the night.

Six Norfolk batters notched two hits in the game, including Mancini, who went 2-for-4 with three RBIs and Walker, who went 2-for-5 with two RBIs.

The G-Braves and Tides continue the three-game series at Coolray Field on Tuesday night at 7:05 p.m. Right-hander Rob Wooten (1-1, 2.08), fresh off six no-hit innings in his last outing at Louisville, is scheduled to start for Gwinnett against right-hander Joe Gunkel (5-5, 3.93) for Norfolk. Tony Schiavone will have the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM at 6:35 p.m.

It’s a Two-for-Tuesday night, as all Dugout seats are two for the price of one. Tickets for Tuesday’s game are on sale now at the Coolray Field Ticket Office, call 678-277-0340 or visit GwinnettBraves.com/tickets to purchase.