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Atlanta Braves Minor League Recap: Newcomb pitches well, Braxton homers

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Braves get mixed outings from Newcomb and Povse while young Latin American signees excel

Max Povse
Max Povse at the 2016 California-Carolina League All Star Game
Jen Mac Ramos/SB Nation Baseball

The Braves had some of their talented young arms going last night, pitching with mixed success.

Gwinnett Braves 2, Indianapolis Indians 8


  • Ozzie Albies, 2B: 0-4, 2 K, .247/.304/.352
  • Reid Brignac, SS: 2-4, 2 2B, RBI, K, .268/.371/.366
  • Ryan Weber, RP: 4 IP, 5 H, 1 BB, 2 R, 1 ER, 6 K

Pirates top prospect Tyler Glasnow came into this one throwing back to back no hit outings, though he only pitched seven and six innings in the games due to high pitch counts. Last night Gwinnett ended the streak when Matt Tuiasosopo singled with two outs in the first and was doubled in by Reid Brignac. Unfortunately that’s as good as things got for the Braves, as a loaded Indianapolis team put up five first inning runs on Manny Banuelos.

Banuelos was bad, giving up six hits in his only inning as he failed to make it into the second inning, which caused the bullpen to get worked hard. Ryan Weber came up with a strong appearance out of the pen and was able to provide four solid innings, but the damage had already been done and the Braves just weren’t able to make Glasnow pay for his command struggles.

It was a quiet night for Ozzie Albies and Rio Ruiz, who combined to go 0-7 with a pair of strikeouts and a walk. The pair came in hot, but struggled to do much of anything at the plate against Tyler Glasnow- though pretty much everyone in the International League has had the same problem. The four hits in the game, all off Glasnow, were a pair each from Matt Tuiasosopo and Reid Brignac with three of the four being doubles. Georgia native and potential trade target Austin Meadows, who was recently promoted to AAA by the Pirates, was just a homer short of the cycle.

Next Game: Tuesday at Indianapolis @7:05 PM

Probable Starters: Gwinnett-Chris Ellis(0-2, 18.00)

Indianapolis-Trevor Williams(2-3, 5.01)

Mississippi Braves 2, Jacksonville Suns 1- 6 innings rain


  • Sean Newcomb, SP: 6 IP, 6 H, 2 BB, 1 R, 6 K, Win
  • Dansby Swanson, SS: 0-2, BB, R, .254/.336/.404
  • Carlos Franco, 3B: 2-3, 2 RBI. Game winning hit. .258/.345/.310

Jacksonville got a run in the third, an inning in which Sean Newcomb struggled a bit, and had the game under control at 1-0 in a pitchers duel. The Braves finally struck Georgia Tech alum Jake Esch for two runs in the bottom of the sixth as Carlos Franco singled home two runs. Then came the rain delay of nearly an hour and a half, followed by the umpires calling the game as complete.

Newcomb had a very strong stat line and came out ahead in the pitchers duel against Esch, but the start wasn’t as positive as it seems at first look. He threw just 49 of his 84 pitches for strikes, a ratio slightly worse than what Esch did and Esch walked four. Newcomb is posting results based on his pure stuff but the command remains an issue, similar to the guy the AAA Braves faced in Tyler Glasnow.

The offense didn’t do much here against the Suns, but luckily they did just enough to get the win. Dansby Swanson went hitless here but did manage to extend his on base streak to eight games with a walk. Dustin Peterson also had a hitless game, going 0-3.

Next Game: Wednesday 6/29 at Jackson @8:05 PM

Probable Starters: Mississippi-Andrew Thurman(1-6, 6.05)


Carolina Mudcats 5, Frederick Keys 6


  • Max Povse, SP: 7 IP, 7 H, 0 BB, 4 R, 2 HR, 4 K
  • Braxton Davidson, RF: 2-3, BB, HR, 2 RBI, K, .235/.338/.372
  • AJ Minter, RP: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 BB, 0 R, 1 K

Carolina started out hot, scoring runs in each of their first three innings against Frederick, but those five runs in three innings were all the scoring for the Mudcats. Unfortunately the pitching couldn’t hold up the lead. Max Povse was decent, but it wasn’t one of his best outings as he gave up four runs on a pair of homers. Then in the bottom of the ninth while trying to close out a 5-4 lead, Chase Johnson-Mullins gave up three hits and an intentional walk while recording just one out allowing the Keys to have a walk off win.

Braxton Davidson is locked in right now. In his last four games he is 4-13 with a pair of homers, three walks, and five RBI. It will be interesting to see if he can continue to build upon that recent success and start tapping into his plus power on a more consistent basis. The other strong performance came from AJ Minter, who pitched a perfect inning to bring him up to 15 IP in his first 12 games without allowing a run between Rome and Carolina. Minter has held opponents to a combined .102 batting average and just a 0.67 WHIP.

Next Game: Tuesday at Frederick @7:00 PM

Probable Starters: Carolina-TBD

Frederick-Matthew Grimes(7-4, 1.55)

Rome Braves PPD Rain

Rome saw Kannapolis get hit by enough rain to cancel their game.

Next Game: Tuesday at Kannapolis @6:05 PM

Probable Starters: Rome-Mike Soroka(1-6, 2.92)

Kannapolis-Brannon Easterling(3-1, 2.52)

Danville Braves 5, Princeton Rays 4- 11 innings


  • Matt Gonzalez, 2B: 3-5, K
  • Ryan O’Malley, 3B: 1-4, HR, 2 RBI, K
  • Jeremy Walker, RP: 1.2 IP, 4 H, 0 BB, 2 R, 4 K

Recent Braves draftees played a huge part in this one. Danville scored three runs in the first and got five solid innings out of starter Jhon Martinez, where he allowed two runs. He was followed by fifth round pick Jeremy Walker’s rough pro debut, where he allowed Princeton to tie it up. Another recent draftee, Corbin Clouse, followed Walker with five strikeouts in two innings that were just one walk away from being spotless. Zach Rice followed and ended up getting the win, but just like in his debut the other day he walked a pair in relief. Finally a perfect inning by Devan Watts, the fourth recent draftee to pitch here, got the save.

At the plate more recent draftees played a big role in the extra inning win. Ryan O’Malley hit his first pro homer for Danville, while both Matt Gonzalez and Marcus Mooney each went 3-5 with a bunch of singles and Gonzalez scored the winning run on a Trey Keegan double in the 11th. Ramon Osuna went 0-5 and took the golden sombrero.

In the daily Isranel Wilson update, the young center fielder struggled in the win. Wilson went 0-5 and stuck out a pair of times, though he did have an assist from the outfield throwing out top Rays prospect Adrian Rondon at second base.

Next Game: Tuesday at Princeton @7:00 PM

Probable Starters: Danville-TBD


GCL Braves 8, Indianapolis Indians 7


  • Randy Ventura, RF: 3-5, R, CS
  • Derian Cruz, DH: 2-5, 2B, 2 RBI, K
  • Christian Pache, CF: 3-4, 3B, RBI, 2 R

The GCL Braves had a 4-1 lead early on, but a five run seventh inning put the Pirates up 7-4 heading into the bottom of the eighth. The Braves, who hadn’t scored outside of putting up four runs in the second, struck for a pair in the eighth and then a pair in the bottom of the ninth for a walk off win as Derian Cruz and Luis Mejia singled in runs.

The Braves young Latin American signees came up huge here at the plate. Randy Ventura, Derian Cruz, Christian Pache, Anthony Concepcion, and William Contreras combined to go 11-18 with a pair of walks, scoring six of the team’s eight runs, collecting four RBI, as well as three extra base hits.

Next Game: Tuesday at GCL Pirates @12:00 PM

Probable Starters: GCL Braves-TBD

GCL Pirates-TBD