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Atlanta Braves Minor League Recap 5/30: Rio Ruiz hits GW Home Run

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After Gwinnett gave up a 5-2 lead, Rio Ruiz saved the day with an 8th inning home run. Ozzie Albies had 2 hits, and Joey Meneses and Luke Dykstra had 3 each.

Rio Ruiz
Ruiz's 8th inning home run vaulted the GBraves to victory
Garrett Spain

(25-27) Gwinnett Braves 6, (26-21) Pawtucket Red Sox 5

Box Score

  • Rio Ruiz, 3B: 1-3, HR, BB, .255/.349/.370
  • Brandon Snyder, RF: 1-3, BB, .324/.367/.414
  • Ozzie Albies, SS: 2-5, 2B, RBI, .237/.269/.368
  • John Gant, SP: 6.2 IP, 11 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, 3.14 ERA

Gwinnett’s offense put up a good performance tonight, mostly with a huge 5 run inning in the 4th. Matt Tuiasosopo got the hitting started with a single up the middle, and moved to third on Brandon Snyder’s base hit to left field. Ronnier Mustelier knocked in the first run of the game on a line drive off of the pitcher. That seemed to shake up the pitcher a good bit, as after a meeting with the trainer he threw the next two pitches over the top of Rio Ruiz’s head. The latter of those two got all the way to the backstop, allowing Snyder to score. Ruiz and then Anthony Recker walked to bring up Emerson Landoni with the bases loaded, and he responded with a base hit to center field. Ozzie Albies broke the game open after that, knocking in one runner on a broken bat base hit to center, and watcher Anthony Recker score when Rusney Castillo bobbled the ball in Center Field. The game got tied up late, but Rio Ruiz put a ball over the wall in a deep right center field at Coolray Field, and Gwinnett rode that to the win. That home run was Ruiz’s third of the year, and his first since April 22.

Rio Ruiz
Rio Ruiz's 8th inning go ahead home run
Garrett Spain

John Gant had been on fire for Gwinnett, but tonight didn’t have the command we have become accustomed to seeing from him. He left a lot of pitches up early in the game that got him hit hard, and as he wore down a bit towards the end his pitches started to drift up again. Much of the work he sandwiched in between was very effective, but he just wasn’t able to escape his struggles on the bread ends. He was relieved by Matt Marksberry, who after allowing a leadoff single shut down the next 4 hitters he face, 2 by strikeout, to get through an inning and a third scoreless. Every single batter Marksberry faced was right handed, and it’s very nice to see that level of effectiveness from him. Jose Ramirez ran into some slight trouble, but was able to escape in the ninth to get the GBraves a Memorial Day Win.

Next Game: 5/30 vs (26-21) Pawtucket Red Sox @ 7:05 PM ET

Probable Starters

GWN: Lucas Sims (1-3, 5.19 ERA)

PAW: Henry Owens (3-2, 3.52 ERA)

(20-29) Carolina Mudcats 4, (25-25) Frederick Keys 1

Box Score

  • Joseph Odom, DH: 1-3, 2B, BB, .280/.345/.432
  • Braxton Davidson, RF: 1-3, BB, .217/.302/.312
  • Joey Meneses, 1B: 3-4, 2B, 3 RBI, .320/.386/.456
  • Raymar Navarro, SP: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 3.91 ERA

The Mudcats were able to scratch together an early lead in this one, and never let go finally winning 4-1. They scatter 11 hits over 9 innings, and scored all 4 of their runs in the first 4 innings of the game. The final run was scored off the Bat of Ryan Gebhardt, who hit his first professional home run in his 263rd pro game. The common sight tonight was Joey Meneses, who again led this offense and knocked in the other 3 runs that scored in this one. Meneses is second in the league in batting average, 6th in OBP, 8th in Slugging, 6th in OPS, 3rd in hits, and leads the team in almost every offensive category.

Raymar Navarro stepped in for a spot start, and pitched a good game over 5 innings. The rotation for Carolina has struggled this season, but has gotten better of last and this is one of the highlight performances of the season. The bullpen locked down too, starting with Taylor Lewis’s 2 perfect innings with 2 strikeouts. Chase Johnson-Mullins pitched a scoreless inning as well, and Sean McLaughlin closed out the win with his second save of the season.

Next Game: 6/1 vs (19-33) Winston-Salem Dash 7:00 PM ET

Probable Starters

CAR: Matt Withrow (2-4, 4.17 ERA)

FRD: Brandon Brennan (0-3, 7.32 ERA)

(20-31) Rome Braves 1, (26-25) Columbia Fireflies 5

Box Score

  • Austin Riley, 3B: 1-4, .236/.284/.365
  • Jonathan Morales, DH: 0-4, BB, 2 RBI, .287/.328/.386
  • Luke Dykstra, 2B: 3-4, .307/.353/.369
  • Oriel Caicedo, SP: 6.1 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, 3.38 ERA

A nearly total offensive disappearance once again doomed Rome, as they only mustered one second inning run. The offensive star was Luke Dykstra, who knocked 3 of Rome’s 7 hits in this one, though didn’t score or knock in a run. The only run was scored by Justin Ellison, who doubled in his at bat and was doubled in by Wigberto Nevarez. Alejandro Salazar had a hit and a stolen base in this game to push his hitting streak to 8 games.

Oriel Caicedo started strong in this game, cruising through six innings without allowing a run. He was brought out for one final inning, or rather out, and fell apart there. He allowed 2 consecutive singles to start the inning, got a strikeout, and then allowed another single before being pulled. He was replaced by Josh Graham, who allowed the first man he faced to hit a 3 run home run. Graham allowed another run later in the inning, but worked a scoreless 8th. Grayson Jones got the call in the ninth inning, and worked a scoreless inning.

Next Game: 5/31 vs (26-25) Columbia Fireflies 2:00 PM ET

Probable Starters

ROM: Touki Toussaint (1-4, 6.39 ERA)

COL: Kevin Canelon (3-3, 3.20 ERA)