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Atlanta Braves Minor League Recap: Dansby homers, Rio heats up, Rome bats light up

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Interesting night down on the farm as several of the Braves bats seem to be heating up.

Rio Ruiz

Gwinnett Braves 5, Indianapolis Indians 9

Box Score

  • Ozzie Albies, SS: 0-5, .243/.302/.351
  • Rio Ruiz, 3B: 3-4, run, .276/.373/.382
  • Chris Ellis, SP: 4.1 IP, 3 H, 5 ER, 5 BB, 5 K

Chris Ellis continued his rough start to his AAA career and the rest of the pitching staff struggled as well as Gwinnett fell 9-5. Ellis was strong through the first four innings where he gave up just one run, but the wheels came off in the 5th inning where Ellis walked the first three batters he faced and things got rougher from there. To be fair to Ellis, his line does look worse thanks to the work of former top prospect Ryan Weber who allowed a couple of inherited runners to score as he couldn’t help Gwinnett escape trouble. In short, no Braves pitcher in this game would emerge unscathed as each one of them gave up at least 1 earned run.

The offense did some good work on the evening thanks to a little bit of help from Indy’s 3 errors. Rio Ruiz had arguably the best offensive performance of the night with his first 3 hit performance since the beginning of May. He has looked much improved since his DL stint and has his triple slash numbers trending upward in a hurry now. Ronnier Mustelier added a three hit game of his own and Matt Lipka drove in a pair of runs while recording a hit. Newly promoted Mel Rojas Jr. added a pair of hits and a couple of runs scored as well.

Next Game: 6/24 hosting Charlotte @ 7:05 PM

Probable Starters: Joel De La Cruz - Gwinnett, Jacob Turner - Charlotte

Mississippi Braves 3, Jacksonville Suns 8

Box Score

  • Dansby Swanson, SS: 2-4, HR, RBI, .247/.332/.401
  • Dustin Peterson, LF: 0-4, .279/.346/.430
  • Joey Meneses, 1B: 2-4, 3B, run
  • Andrew Thurman, SP: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 7 ER, 6 BB, 1 K, 6.05 ERA

Andrew Thurman had an outing that he would rather forget about as Mississippi fell to Jacksonville 8-3. Thurman failed to escape the first inning as he could not find the strike zone at all and walked 6 (!) batters before he was taken out. After the first inning, Bradley, Hursh, Morris, and Peterson did not allow a run, but the damage had been done. Morris, acquired in the second trading of Kelly Johnson, has yet to give up an earned run in four appearances for the Braves thus far.

On offense, Dansby Swanson had his third multi-hit game in his past four and including his 6th homer of the year as he appears to be breaking out of his slump quite nicely. Joey Meneses, in his first game since his well-earned promotion to AA, had a couple of hits including a triple while Dustin Peterson in a rare sign of mercy towards the other team went 0-4. Connor Lien made his return to Mississippi from the DL and went 0-4 with 2 Ks, but it was nice to see him back on the field again.

Next Game: 6/24 hosting Jacksonville @ 8:00 PM

Probable Starters: Mississippi - Victor Mateo, Jacksonville - Patrick Johnson

Carolina Mudcats 2, Myrtle Beach Pelicans 1

Box Score

  • Braxton Davidson, RF: 0-2, BB, .231/.333/.348
  • Tanner Murphy, C: 1-2, HR, RBI, BB, .151/.237/.259
  • Enderson Franco, SP: 7 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 1 K, 4.48 ERA

Carolina won a pitcher’s duel in which Enderson Franco was excellent and downed Myrtle Beach 2-1. Enderson pitched 7 strong innings to rebound from a somewhat rough outing his last time on the mound and continues to be one of the more reliable inning eaters in the organization. AJ Minter has yet to give up a run in 2016 (11 appearances) and appears to be every bit as good as the Braves hoped as he continues his comeback from TJS. Chase Johnson-Mullins locked down his 8th save of the year and if he continues his current trajectory could easily see time in AA before too long.

On offense, Carolina did just enough to squeak out the win despite losing two of its best hitters (Odom and Meneses) to promotion. Tanner Murphy, who has struggled quite a bit this season, hit a solo shot and Reed Harper added an RBI, but those two batters would account for the only two hits that Carolina would manage in the game. Braxton Davidson went 0-2 with a walk, although he has looked better at the plate of late and has a chance to shine in the wake of the midseason promotions that saw the heart of Carolina’s order getting promoted to Mississippi.

Next Game: 6/24 at Myrtle Beach @ 7:05 PM

Probable Starters: Carolina - Matt Withrow, Myrtle Beach - Erick Leal

Rome Braves 12, Charleston RiverDogs 3

Box Score

  • Austin Riley, 3B: 1-4, HR, BB, .252/.301/.382
  • Justin Ellison, RF: 3-5, HR, 4 RBI, .236/.286/.356
  • Carlos Castro, 1B: 3-4, HR, 2 RBI, 2 runs, .207/.233/.506
  • Max Fried, SP: 6 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K, 4.09 ERA

A whole lot went right for Rome as they routed Charleston 12-3. Max Fried looked downright dominant over six innings with a solo homer being the only real blemish on his line for the night. Particularly encouraging was the no walks and the fact that he made it 6 innings in an efficient manner. Dalton Geekie was excellent in his inning of relief while Adam McCreery and Josh Graham each gave up a run in their innings of work.

On offense, Rome jumped all over Charleston as the ball seemed to be jumping off of their bats. Austin Riley, Carlos Castro, and Justin Ellison all went deep and 5 of Rome’s batters had multi-hit games while only Lucas Herbert went hitless amongst Rome’s starters in the lineup. Ellison was the leader in the clubhouse with 4 RBIs but this was truly a team effort as there was production up and down the lineup, including Jonathan Morales who added a couple of hits in the hope that he can break out of his lengthy slump. He also hit another ball hard but the outfielder made a great play to rob him of extra-bases.

Next Game: 6/24 hosting Charleston @ 7:00 PM

Probable Starters: Rome - Patrick Weigel, Charleston - Yefrey Ramirez

Danville Braves 5, Pulaski Yankees 3 - Suspended Play after 4 innings

Box Score

  • Ramon Osuna, 1B: 1-2, run, 2 RBI
  • Isranel Wilson, CF: 2-2, 2 2B, run
  • Jaret Hellinger, SP: 3.1 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 3 K

Not going to dwell much here as this game will be resumed today but it was nice to see new draftee Ramon Osuna as well as Isranel Wilson start their seasons off strong. Sadly, the weather stopped this game in the 4th inning, which may be best as Hellinger gave up a couple homers right before the weather moved in.

Next Game: 6/24 completing last night’s game and playing another against Pulaski

The GCL Braves open up play tomorrow at noon against the GCL Yankees East