Atlanta Braves Minor League Recap: 5/18

Stacy Revere

J.R. Graham and Shae Simmons took the mound in a win for Mississippi, and Victor Reyes' hit streak came to an end.

Gwinnett Braves vs. Indianapolis Indians

The G-Braves and Indians were rained out on Sunday afternoon. The two teams will play a twin bill this evening in Gwinnett County, with Cody Martin scheduled to pitch in game one, and Mitch Atkins in game two.

Mississippi Braves: 4 vs. Tennessee Smokies: 2

Mississippi won their fifth consecutive game on Sunday with a triumph over Tennessee. J.R. Graham started on the mound for Mississippi, with his pitch count once again limited as he continues to return to full health after a shoulder injury, and had a decent outing. Graham cruised through the first three innings of the game, striking out three batters and allowing only one baserunner (a single). Graham ran into a bit of trouble in the fourth, however, as Tennessee loaded the bases with one out after a pair of singles and a walk. Another single plated the first run scored against Graham, and then a sacrifice fly made it two. Graham escaped the inning with a strikeout, however, ending his night after throwing sixty-five pitches, forty-two for strikes. Ryan Weber, Chasen Shreve, James Hoyt, and Shae Simmons, however, combined to toss five innings of scoreless relief work, allowing only a hit and a walk (both came during Weber's two innings of work). Shae Simmons was excellent once again, using his blistering fastball and filthy slider to get a swinging strikeout, a weak groundout, and a soft lineout to close out the game. That's now 26 strikeouts to 4 walks for Simmons on the season, if you're keeping track.

Mississippi's first run of the game was plated after, believe it or not, J.R. Graham singled and then scored on a Myke Jones double. Cedric Hunter had an RBI double of his own in the bottom of the 6th that scored Jones after he walked, which tied the game for the M-Braves at 2-2. The biggest blow, however, came in the bottom of the seventh inning, when Smokies reliever Jeff Lorick gave up a two-run double to David Rohm, which put the Braves on top for good. Matt Kennelly was one of the runners who scored on Rohm's double (he started the inning with a single), and he had a nice day, walking twice and reaching in three of his four plate appearances. There weren't any standout offensive performances for Mississippi in this game, per se, but timely hitting allowed the club to emerge victorious. Jason Hursh will go for the M-Braves tonight as they attempt to sweep the Smokies in their 5-game set.

Lynchburg Hillcats: 4 vs. Wilmington Blue Rocks: 5

  • José Peraza, 2B: 1-4, 2 R, 3B (3), BB, SB (21), E (5, fielding), .318
  • Kyle Wren, CF: 1-4, 3 RBI (12), K, SB (18), .275
  • Will Skinner, DH: 1-3, R, BB, 2 K, .239
  • Edison Sanchez, 1B: 1-4, K, .223
  • Alejandro Piloto, RF: 0-1, R, RBI (7), 2 BB, .133
  • Lay Baitsta: 3 IP, 2 H, ER, BB, K, 5:2 GO:FO, 4.70 ERA
  • Eric Pfisterer: 1.1 IP, K, 1:2 GO:FO, 6.87 ERA
  • Benino Pruneda (L): 2 IP, 3 H, ER, 3 K, 0:1 GO:FO, 3.86 ERA

Lynchburg dropped a close contest to Wilmington on Sunday, losing 5-4. It was a staff-by-committee day for Lynchburg, as Lay Batista went only three innings in his start, giving up a run on a walk and two hits, striking out one. Navery Moore, Eric Pfisterer, Benino Pruneda, and Nate Hyatt all took their turns in relief. Moore had a rough outing, as he gave up three runs (although all were unearned due to a fielding error by Eric Garcia), which culminated in a two-run single by Bubba Starling that plated a pair of runners. Benino Pruneda took the loss, after allowing a pair of singles after a runner reached on a strikeout that was ruled a wild pitch, allowing the runner to reach base. Eric Pfisterer and Nate Hyatt both worked scoreless outings, pitching 1.1 and 1 inning, respectively.

After both Kyle Wren and José Peraza were caught stealing without a successful attempt last night, the ship was righted as the speedy 1-2 combination in the order executed a double steal in the bottom of the second inning. Wren had one hit on the day, a bloop single in the aforementioned bottom of the second that plated a pair of runs (he also drove in Peraza later in the game with a sacrifice fly). Peraza also gathered a sole hit, however, his was a triple that led to Wren's sac fly. He also reached earlier in the game with a walk. Peraza was dealt some poor luck in the bottom of the ninth inning, however, after he came up to the plate with runners on first and second after an Alejandro Piloto walk and a Levi Hyams pinch-hit single. Peraza lined into a double play, as he hit a ball to center fielder Bubba Starling that was caught and then thrown with Starling's rocket arm to second to force out Alejandro Piloto, and that was all she wrote for Lynchburg. The Hillcats will have an off day before traveling north to take on the Potomac Nationals on Tuesday.

In other Lynchburg news, Frank Wren spoke about Mauricio Cabrera's current DL stint, giving us some new information as to what's been causing him trouble. In this report by Damien Sordelett, Wren characterizes Cabrera's injury as a "forearm injury" and says that "we're going to be careful and do what's best for him and our organization." This is definitely something to keep an eye on.

Rome Braves: 3 at Lakewood BlueClaws: 8

  • Connor Oliver, CF: 1-4, R, K, .329
  • Victor Caratini, C: 1-4, 2B (8), .290
  • Joey Meneses, LF: 2-3, R, 2B (12), HR (8), 2 RBI, BB, E (5, fielding), .297
  • Victor Reyes, RF: 0-4, 2 K, .366
  • Carlos Franco, 3B: 1-4, 3 K, .205
  • Yean Carlos Gil (L): 5 IP, 12 H, 6 R (4 ER), BB, 3 K, 9:3 GO:FO, 1.72 ERA
  • Tyler Vail: 2 IP, H, ER, BB, 1:3 GO:FO, 0.61 ERA
  • Michael Swanner: IP, H, ER, BB, K, 1:0 GO:FO, 5.06 ERA

Rome was clawed by Lakewood on Sunday, dropping an 8-3 decision. Yean Carlos Gil had a tough day on the mound, getting shelled for 12 hits in five innings' worth of work. Gil gave up three runs in the first inning that were augmented by a Seth Moranda error that allowed a runner to reach. It was a tough outing for the 23-year-old Venezuelan lefty, who's been largely effective as both a reliever and a starter this season. Tyler Vail and Michael Swanner finished out the game from the bullpen, both giving up a run in relief. The run given up by Vail was his first of the season, however, it looks like he's been the beneficiary of some luck, as he's given up 16 hits in 14.2 innings of work (albeit with a 12:3 K:BB ratio).

The big news from Rome's game today was the end of Victor Reyes' impressive hit streak.

He went hitless at the dish with a pair of strikeouts, failing to record either a hit or a walk for only the sixth time in 39 games this season. Joey Meneses has been on an absolute tear as of late, and that continued Sunday, as he was the only real offensive threat for Rome, doubling and hitting a home run. He's slashing .421/.450/.974 in his past 10 games, with four home runs, five doubles, and a pair of triples. He also committed an error in left field, his fifth of the year. Victor Caratini also doubled in the game. Rome will send Daniel Cordero to the mound tonight in another match with Lakewood.

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