Atlanta Braves Minor League Recap: 7/26

USA TODAY Sports

Christian Bethancourt walked, Ernesto Mejia and Tyler Tewell homered, Mikey Reynolds was perfect, and Williams Perez pitched seven strong innings on Friday night.

Gwinnett Braves 4, Charlotte Knights 1

  • Todd Cunningham, CF: 0-4
  • Tyler Pastornicky, SS: 1-4, R, K, E (fielding, 10)
  • Alden Carrithers, LF: 1-4, R
  • Ernesto Mejia, 1B: 1-4, R, HR (27), RBI, K
  • Brandon Boggs, RF: 1-4, 2B (13), 2 RBI, 2 K
  • Stefan Gartrell, DH: 1-4, R, K
  • Joe Leonard, 3B: 2-4, 2B (18)
  • Phil Gosselin, 2B: 1-4, RBI
  • David Hale: 7.0 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, 3 K, 108 pitches-61 strikes, 13:2 GO:FO
  • Ryan Buchter: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 30p-19s, 0:0 GO:FO
  • Cory Rasmus: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 16p-8s, 1:0 GO:FO
Gwinnett pulled out a 4-1 win over the Charlotte Knights Friday evening behind seven strong innings from David Hale, TC's 25th ranked prospect. Hale's peripherals were not that stellar (four walks, three strikeouts, 56% strike rate), but the 6'2", 205-pound righty from Princeton University induced a whopping 13 groundouts, keeping his infield busy for a majority of the night. Ryan Buchter and Cory Rasmus provided two cumulative innings of scoreless relief, striking out three and walking two. On offense, Ernesto Mejia pounded his 27th home run, giving him sole possession of 2nd place in the International League behind old friend Mauro Gomez, who has 28 dingers of his own. Joe Leonard and Brandon Boggs also added doubles to the offensive attack. Leonard has disappointed in his first taste of Triple-A, tallying zero home runs and posting an OPS that is 21 percent worse than the International League.


Pensacola Blue Wahoos 5, Mississippi Braves 3

  • Mycal Jones, CF: 1-4, RBI, outfield assist, picked off
  • Christian Bethancourt, C: 0-3, BB (!!!)
  • Tommy La Stella, 2B: 1-4, K
  • Edward Salcedo, 3B: 1-4, R, SB (14)
  • Jose Martinez, RF: 1-4, RBI, 2 K, outfield assist
  • Jaime Pedroza, SS: 2-4, R, E (throw, 15)
  • Christian Marrero, 1B: 2-3, R, BB
  • Dan Brewer, LF: 1-3, SB (18)
  • Michael Lee: 5.0 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 72p-50s, 5:1 GO:FO
  • James Hoyt: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 35p-21s, 3:1 GO:FO
  • Thomas Keeling: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 12p-7s, 1:0 GO:FO
  • Ryne Harper: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 14p-8s, 1:2 GO: FO
Mississippi couldn't overcome an early five-run deficit, falling at the hands of the Pensacola Wahoos. The offense tallied nine hits on the evening but failed to record an extra-base hit. The hits were spread all across the lineup, as Jaime Pedroza and Christian Marrero were the only players to record two singles apiece. The real story, however, is that CHRISTIAN BETHANCOURT TOOK A WALK, his second in three games. TC's 11th ranked prospect is on an absolute tear as of late, posting an OPS of 1.087 with four home runs in his past 10 games. His hot streaks are something special to witness, but his cold streaks are far greater in magnitude due to his inability to consistently control the strike zone. Michael Lee pitched five innings, allowing five runs on seven hits while striking out five. The bullpen trio of Hoyt, Keeling, and Harper threw four strong innings, allowing no runs on two hits. Keeling, the return in the Juan Francisco deal, has posted decent results in 15.1 innings thus far in Mississippi (3.52 ERA), but the lanky lefty has walked more batters than he has struck out and has received some ball-in-play luck, leading to an FIP that is nearly three full runs above his ERA.

Potomac Nationals 6, Lynchburg Hillcats 1

  • Matt Lipka, CF: 1-4, R, 3B (5)
  • David Rohm, DH: 2-3, RBI, BB, K
  • Josh Elander, LF: 1-4, 2B (4), K
  • Kyle Kubitza, 3B: 0-4, 3 K, E (fielding, 20)
  • Shawn McGill, C: 1-3
  • Elmer Reyes, SS: 0-3, E (fielding, 13)
  • Matt Weaver, RF: 1-3
  • Williams Perez: 7.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 8 K, 10:4 GO:FO
  • Zach Jadofsky: 1.1 IP, 3 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 1 K, 2:0 GO:FO
  • Robert Fish: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 1 K, 2:0 GO:FO
Lynchburg's offense was stifled by Potomac Friday night, as the Hillcats could only push across one run in the contest. David Rohm was the highlight on offense, reaching base three times with a couple of singles and a walk. Rohm doesn't get much love in the prospect world, mainly due to the fact that he doesn't have the power necessary for a corner outfield position at the highest level. He is, however, one of the best pure hitters in the system due to excellent hand-eye coordination and a compact swing that is both short and quick to the ball, resulting in plenty of line-drive doubles to the gaps (he's currently tied for fifth in the Carolina League with 25 two-baggers). One could envisage him as a Matt Diaz-type player at the major league level, but plenty of things will need to break in his favor in order for this to become a reality. Elsewhere on offense, Matt Lipka added his fifth triple of the season and Josh Elander added his fourth double since his promotion from Rome. Williams Perez deserved a better fate, pitching seven innings of three-hit baseball, allowing only one run while striking out eight. Zach Jadofsky struggled mightily in relief, allowing four earned runs on three hits and three walks in just over an inning of work.

Rome Braves 7, Asheville Tourists 3

  • Kyle Wren, CF: 0-5, K
  • Jose Peraza, SS: 2-5, 2 R, 2B (12), 3 SB (45), CS (9)
  • Eric Garcia, 3B: 1-4, R, 2B (8), RBI, BB, 2 K
  • Edison Sanchez, 1B: 0-2, 2 BB, 2 K, SB (2)
  • Carlos Franco, DH: 1-4, R
  • Joey Meneses, LF: 1-4, R, 2 K
  • Tyler Tewell, C: 1-4, R, HR (7), 4 RBI, K, E (catcher interference, 7)
  • Daniel Carroll, RF: 2-4, R, K
  • Ross Heffley, 2B; 2-4, 2B (3), RBI
  • Frank Lafreniere: 7.0 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 4 BB, 5 K, 8:1 GO:FO
  • Alex Wilson: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K; 1:0 GO:FO
  • Shae Simmons: 1.0, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K
Rome won. Kyle Wren was 0-for-5 with a strikeout (weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth, etc.) There's nothing more to discuss here.

Kidding, of course. Jose Peraza had a couple of hits, including his 12th double of the season. He also added three more stolen bases to his ledger, bringing his season total to 45, good for fourth place in the South Atlantic League. Eric Garcia and Ross Heffley also added doubles of their own, and Tyler Tewell smashed his seventh home run of the season. Frank Lafreniere battled all evening, going seven innings and allowing three earned runs on five hits and four walks, striking out five. Shae Simmons, Sisson's favorite sleeper prospect in the system, closed the game out for Rome, allowing one hit while striking out the side.

Burlington Royals 3, Danville Braves 10 (Game 1, 7 innings)

  • Connor Lien, CF: 3-4, 3 R, 2B (8), SB (5)
  • Johan Camargo, SS: 3-4, 3 R, 2 RBI, E (3)
  • Mikey Reynolds, 2B: 4-4, 2 R, 3B (1), 4 RBI
  • Victor Caratini, 3B: 2-2, 2 BB
  • Ronald Luna, DH; 1-4, K
  • Alejandro Piloto, RF: 2-3, 2 RBI, BB
  • Anthony Nunez, C: 1-2, 2 R, 2B (2)
  • Andry Ubiera: 6.0 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 5:5 GO:FO
  • Ryan Gunther: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 0:1 GO:FO
Danville's offense exploded in the first game of a doubleheader Friday, tallying 10 runs on 16 hits. Leadoff hitter Connor Lien led the offensive attack, going 3-for-4 with a double and a stolen base. Two-hole hitter Johan Camargo also added three hits of his own. The best performance of the night was turned in by fifth-round pick Mikey Reynolds, going 4-for-4 with a triple and four runs batted in. Reynolds is a smallish grinder-type whose whole is greater than the sum of his parts, but he could provide value as he climbs the ladder in a utility role. Second-round pick Victor Caratini, TC's 18th ranked prospect, reached base four times, bringing his on-base percentage to a stunning .418. Alejandro Piloto continued his success in Danville, reaching base three times on two hits and a walk. Andry Ubiera was hit around a bit in six innings of work, giving up two earned runs on seven hits, a home run, and two walks.

Burlington Royals 2, Danville Braves 0 (Game 2, 7 innings)
  • Connor Lien, CF: 1-4, K
  • Alejandro Piloto, RF: 0-2, BB, K, outfield assist
  • Jacob Schrader, 1B: 1-2, K
  • Carlos Sanchez, C: 1-3
  • Justin Black, DH: 0-3, K
  • Seth Moranda, 2B: 1-2, BB, K
  • Jared Dettmann: 5.1 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 1 K, 7:4 GO:FO
  • Tyler Brosius: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 K, 2:0 GO:FO
It was a tale of two games for Danville's offense, as Burlington held Danville to four hits in the second game of the doubleheader. Connor Lien, Jacob Schrader, Carlos Sanchez, and Seth Moranda all had a single, while Alejandro Piloto reached base via a base on balls. Jared Dettmann, this year's 17th-round pick out of Century College, took the loss, pitching 5.1 innings and allowing two runs on six hits and three walks, striking out one.

Danville Player Stats

GCL Braves 3, GCL Yankees 10

  • Cody Livesay, CF: 3-4, R
  • Victor Reyes, LF: 0-1, K
  • Robinson Arno, 1B: 1-4, R, 2B (5), 2 RBI, 2 K, E (fielding, 3)
  • Joseph Odom: 0-1, BB
  • Orrin Sears, 1-2, RBI, PB (4)
  • Dylan Manwaring: 0-3, BB
  • Francisco Gonzalez: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 0 K, 1:2 GO:FO
  • Christian Barczykowski: 2.1 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 0 K, 1 HR, 5:3 GO:FO
  • Blaine Sims: 2.2 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 4 BB, 3 K, 4:0 GO:FO
  • Steven Schils: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 4 BB, 2 K, 1:2 GO:FO
The GCL Braves were on the wrong end of a blowout against the GCL Yankees, losing by a score of 10-3. Braves pitchers struggled with control against the Yankees lineup, compiling a walk-to-strikeout ratio of 12:5. Cody Livesay had three of the team's five hits. The 19-year-old center fielder, a 42nd-round pick in 2011, has blazing speed and profiles well in center field due to his excellent range. In his second season in the GCL, Livesay is slashing .330/.375/.364 with seven stolen bases in nine attempts. Elsewhere, Robinson Arno added his fifth double of the season, and Orrin Sears came off the bench to register a single in two plate appearances.

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