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Atlanta Braves Minor League Recap 8/28: Ruiz, Riley, Yepez homer; Sims dominant again

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The Braves' minor league affiliates went 3-3 as a couple young third basemen continued their late season surges.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

(74-59) Norfolk Tides 10 vs. (71-62) Gwinnett Braves 2

Box Score

  • Mallex Smith, CF: 1-4, 1 3B, 1 run, outfield assist (10), .285/.331/.376
  • Hector Olivera, 3B: 1-4, 1 2B, 1 run
  • Joey Terdoslavich, 1B: 2-3, 1 RBI, .291/.403/.473
  • Vin Mazzaro, RP: 1.1 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 2 BB, 0 K, 3.20 ERA

The Tides jumped all over Gwinnett as the Braves fell 10-2. This game was a 9-1 game after 3 innings, so its safe to say that Greg Smith didn't have his best stuff in the game (the same can be said for Vin Mazzaro as well). It was also a shame to see Cedric Hunter's hit streak end at 21 games as he did go 0 for 4. Mallex Smith did hit a triple as well as get an outfield assist in the game, his 10th of the year. Hector Olivera hit a double in the game while also making an error at 3rd. Joey Terdoslavich had a good game with a couple of hits and an RBI, but unfortunately his efforts were for naught as the Braves were far too behind to make use of his production. Jason Hursh did make an appearance in this game and gave up a run in 2 innings of work, his 4th straight appearance in which he gave up at least one run.

(74--54) Biloxi Shuckers 1 vs. (66-62) Mississippi Braves 7

Box Score

  • Emerson Landoni, SS: 1-3, 3 runs, 2 BB, .301/.339/.387
  • Rio Ruiz, 3B: 1-5, HR(4), 3 RBI, .237/.337/.321
  • Lucas Sims, SP: 6.1 IP, 5 H, 1 R (0 ER), 2 BB, 5 K, 3.54 ERA

Another set of strong performances from Rio Ruiz and Lucas Sims as Mississippi beat Biloxi 7-1. Sims, who had begun to be written off by many as a prospect, is trying to prove his doubters wrong in this second half, in particular since his promotion to Mississippi. He now has 4 straight starts where he has given up 1 ER or less. Rio Ruiz had the big blow on offense with a 3-run shot in the 3rd inning, his fourth of the year and it also extended his hit streak to 13 games. Emerson Landoni scored 3 runs out of the leadofff spot and the Braves as a whole were happy to get 12 free passes via walks in the game. Kevin Ahrens and Barrett Kleinknecht also had RBIs while Ryne Harper and Mauricio Cabrera locked down the later innings out of the bullpen to insure the win.

(69-62) Lynchburg Hillcats 8 vs. (66-64) Carolina Mudcats 2

Box Score

  • Joseph Schrader, 1B: 2-4, HR(14), 1 RBI, .265/.311/.470
  • Joseph Odom, DH: 1-3, 1 RBI, .225/.292/.428
  • Brandon Barker, SP: 6 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 3.00 ERA

Another tough night for a Braves' affiliate as the Mudcats got routed by Lynchburg 8-2. Brandon Barker was his usual steady self, giving up 2 earned runs in 6 innings pitched. However, then bullpen work of Clayton Cook and Jorge Zavala left something to be desired as they gave up 5 earned runs on 6 hits and 4 walks. The offense for the Mudcats was not particularly good either, with Jacob Schrader's 14th homer this year being the highlight by a wide margin. The Mudcats only managed 5 hits and with Connor Lien and Dustin Peterson combining to go 0-8, the Mudcats didn't have nearly enough offense to keep pace with Lynchburg, with Joseph Odom getting the only other RBI for Carolina.

(54-76) Rome Braves 4  vs. (54-74) Lexington Legends 6

Box Score

  • Stephen Gaylor, CF: 3-5, 1 run, 1 RBI, .275/.368/.349
  • Bryan De La Rosa, C: 2-5, 1 2B, 1 RBI, .209/.282/.328
  • Oriel Caicedo, SP: 6 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 3.57 ERA

Rome led this game late, but Lexington rallied in the later innings to beat Rome 6-4 on a walk-off 2-run homer. Oriel Caicedo pitched a strong start with 6 innings while giving up 3 runs. Unfortunately, the bullpen tandem of Dustin Emmons and Evan Phillips gave up 3 earned runs and could not seem to keep the ball in the park. The offense did their part, with 14 hits and four different players with RBIs. Stephen Gaylor was particularly effective out of the leadoff spot with 3 hits, an RBI, and a run scored. Four other players had multiple hits in the game, while Braxton Davidson had the night off.

(23-40) Bluefield Blue Jays 1 vs. (32-32) Danville Braves 4

Box Score

  • Austin Riley, 3B: 2-3, HR(4 - 11th overall), 1 BB, 2 RBI, .340/.425/.557
  • Juan Yepez, 1B: 3-4, HR, 1 RBI, .282/.323/.471
  • Mike Soroka, SP: 4 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K, 3.75 ERA
  • Matthew Custred, RP: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 1.47 ERA

Austin Riley and Juan Yepez both homered as Danville beats Bluefield 4-1. The talent down in rookie ball is very exciting, in particular Riley and Yepez. Riley has been hitting the cover off the ball for most of the season while Yepez is arguably the hottest hitter on Danville after struggling immediately after his promotion from the GCL. Mike Soroka, with the support from the offense, was excellent as he pitched 4 innings and gave up just one run while striking out 7 despite have a bout of wildness early in the game. Matthew Custred got the save after 1.1 innings during which he struck out 3 and lowered his ERA to 1.47 at Danville.

(19-40) GCL Astros 1 vs. (26-33) GCL Braves 8

Box Score

  • Collin Yellich, DH: 1-4, 3 runs, HR(1), 2 RBI, 1 BB, .240/.361/.306
  • Jonathan Morales, C: 3-4, 1 2B, 2 runs, 1 RBI, .295/.372/.508
  • Alan Rangel, RP: 2 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 3 K, 6.31 ERA

Collin Yelich hit his first professional homer as the GCL Braves routed the Astros 8-1.  Jonathan Morales and Kelvin Estevez continued their recent hot streaks as they combined for 5 hits and 3 RBIs. Bradley Keller, who had been a horrendous slump of late, tried to get back on track with a couple of hits as well. Michael Kohn had a good appearance as he rehabs while he and 3 other pitchers combined to give up just one run.