It was a fun Friday evening for Braves fans as not only did the big league squad win to extend their lead in the division to 4.5 games, their minor league teams went a combined 3-1 with big performances from Freddy Tarnok, Drew Waters, Travis Demeritte, Shea Langeliers, and Landon Stephens. Lets get into the games.
Gwinnett Stripers 6, Columbus Clippers 3
- Drew Waters, CF: 2-5, HR, RBI, .704 OPS
- Cristian Pache, DH: 2-5, 2B, R, .786 OPS
- Jason Kipnis, 2B: 2-3, HR, 2 RBI, BB, 2 R, .916 OPS
- Travis Demeritte, RF: 2-3, HR, 3 RBI, BB, 1.021 OPS
- Jose Rodriguez, SP: 5 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 4.61 ERA
Gwinnett started off a bit slow offensively, but picked things up thanks to a couple of big homers later in the game from Jason Kipnis and Travis Demeritte as the Stripers took down Columbus by the score of 6-3. Jose Rodriguez got the start for Gwinnett and pitched well across five innings with just one earned run allowed with four strikeouts. The Striper bullpen scattered a couple of runs the rest of the way, which would have been unfortunate if the offense hadn’t picked up the pace later in the game. Fortunately, no harm, no foul.
Offensively, Drew Waters got the scoring started for Gwinnett with an opposite field home run in the fourth inning. Drew has been scuffling of late for the Stripers, so it was nice to see him put a good swing on a ball. Joining Waters with multi-hit games was Cristian Pache, Jason Kipnis, and Travis Demeritte with Kipnis and Demeritte each connecting for home runs late in the game which drove in a total of five runs to give Gwinnett a comfortable cushion to close the game out with. Demeritte’s homer was his 19th of the season as he has quietly put together a nice .305/.401/.643 line in 67 games this season.
Mississippi Braves 7, Montgomery Biscuits 0
- Shea Langeliers, C: 2-4, HR, 3 RBI, .825 OPS
- Luke Waddell, SS: 1-3, RBI, 2 BB, 2 R, .496 OPS
- CJ Alexander, DH: 3-4, 2B, 3B, RBI, .638 OPS
- Freddy Tarnok, SP: 6.1 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 8 K, 2.41 ERA
Freddy Tarnok was excellent for Mississippi on Friday evening and that plus a balanced offensive attack led by Shea Langeliers gave the M-Braves yet another win, this one a 7-0 shutout victory over the Biscuits. The official scorers must have changed something to a hit later in the game or afterwards, because when Tarnok left his start in the seventh inning, it was with a no-hitter going as Montgomery could not do anything against him. Freddy did get some help from some great defense in the outfield from Trey Harris and Justin Dean, but pitching into the seventh inning with eight strikeouts is a hell of a performance. Unfortunately, Will Latcham immediately gave up a hit to end the no-hitter to make the scoring change later a moot point, but that was the only blemish from the bullpen the rest of the way.
On offense, Mississippi got started early as Shea Langeliers connected for his 20th homer of the season in the bottom of the 1st inning. That three-run shot was just the beginning as Mississippi would jump out to a 7-0 by the end of the fourth inning. Langeliers, Justin Dean, Trey Harris, and CJ Alexander all had multi-hit games for Mississippi. Hat tip to CJ Alexander who has had a rough season overall, but who has an 1.187 OPS in the month of September so far after posting a .932 OPS in the month of August.
Rome Braves 2, Asheville Tourists 8
- Michael Harris, DH: 2-3, 2 2B, RBI, BB, .798 OPS
- Riley Delgado, 3B: 3-4, R, .619 OPS
- Jake McSteen, SP: 6 IP, 8 H, 7 R (6 ER), 1 BB, 5 K, 4.30 ERA
It was a tough night in Rome as Asheville jumped all over Jake McSteen early and the Braves ultimately succumbed by the final score of 8-2. It was a tough night for McSteen as he not only got beat up early, but had to stay in the game for a while to help out Rome’s depleted pitching ranks. Sometimes, you just have to wear it. Davis Schwab would eventually relieve him and he gave up an unearned run in two innings of work.
On offense, Michael Harris had another productive night at the plate with a couple of doubles to go along with a RBI and a walk. Riley Delgado had a three hit night, but beyond those two...well, the offense was lacking as Harris’ two doubles were the only extra-base hits that Rome had on the evening and the rest of the lineup combined for just three singles. One of those singles did belong to Vaughn Grissom, though, as he has hit safely in six of the seven games since he was promoted to Rome.
Augusta GreenJackets 11, Columbia Fireflies 1
- Tyler Tolve, C: 2-4, 3B, 2 RBI, BB, .678 OPS
- Landon Stephens, LF: 3-4, 2 HR, 5 RBI, BB, .830 OPS
- Jared Johnson, SP: 4 IP, 1 H, 1 R (0 ER), 5 BB, 6 K, 6.23 ERA
It was good to see a big game from Augusta as Landon Stephens went wild with a pair of home runs to back a good, but weird start from Jared Johnson as the GreenJackets won easily by the score of 11-1. Jared Johnson was on the mound for Augusta and while he did walk five batters in four innings of work, he only gave up one hit and the one run scored under his watch was on a wild pitch which is pretty peak Jared Johnson. The command was and has been an issue for Johnson, but it was nice to see him missing bats and not get squared up. The Augusta bullpen combined for five scoreless innings of relief with seven strikeouts to secure the rout.
On offense, well....a lot of good things happened as the team combined for 16 hits. Landon Stephens was the star of the show as he connected for a pair of home runs, including one of the inside the park variety, to give him 20 on the season while driving in five runs on the evening. In addition to Stephens, Bryson Horne, Willie Carter, Tyler Tolve, and Christian Robinson all drove in runs and had multi-hit games for the GreenJackets.