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Braves Minor League Recap: Andrew Hoffman pitches 7 scoreless innings

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Andrew Hoffman capped off his professional debut with seven shutout innings in Augusta’s win

MLB: Atlanta Braves at Pittsburgh Pirates Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

It was a bit of a short one down on the farm, as two rainouts cut into the overall action. The two remaining games featured great starting pitching but went in opposite directions once that was over. The star of the day was 12th rounder Andrew Hoffman who improved his ERA on the season to 2.73.

(67-48) Gwinnett Stripers, (60-55) Nashville Sounds PPD

Next Game: 9/16 vs (60-55) Nashville Sounds @ 7:05 PM ET

Probable Starters

GWN: TBD

COL: Ethan Small (1-0, 1.14 ERA)

(66-43) Mississippi Braves 5, (57-53) Chattanooga Lookouts 6

Box Score

  • Braden Shewmake, SS: 0-4, .223/.266/.392
  • Trey Harris, RF: 2-3, 2B, BB, HBP, 2 RBI, .250/.320/.358
  • Shea Langeliers, C: 1-3, HBP, RBI, .258/.334/.491
  • Alan Rangel, SP: 6 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 7 K, 4.50 ERA
  • Troy Bacon, RP: 1 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 2.79 ERA

It is hard to win games when you give up six runs over the final three innings and that is exactly what Mississippi did in this one. It’s hard to complain much about what the offense did in this one as they gave the pitching staff an early lead and runs late when they needed them to go back ahead. Trey Harris has been mashing in August and he kept that rolling with a first inning double to set Mississippi up in a good spot early. Shea Langeliers delivered the big hit to put the Braves up by a run but the inning wasn’t yet over. A CJ Alexander base hit moved Langeliers to third and the pitcher balked home Langeliers to give Mississippi a two run lead. This lead held for awhile, and it’s a good thing it did as the Braves offense went into sleep mode for a few. Trey Harris was the only Brave to reach base from the second to sixth innings, getting on via a walk and a hit by pitch, and in the bottom of the sixth Chattanooga dropped a couple of runs in to tie the game. Needing offense in the seventh they got it in a bunch. CJ Alexander walked to kick off the inning and a double from Wendell Rijo put the Braves in a threatening position with no outs. After a strikeout Jefrey Ramos grounded a ball to second base with the infield in but the throw wasn’t on target enough to get CJ Alexander and the Braves took a 3-2 lead. The big hit came a few batters late from Harris, who ripped a two run single into left field to give Mississippi a commanding three run lead.

Alan Rangel had command of this game in its early stages, falling back on that 2-0 lead for the first five innings as he cruised. The most trouble he was in came in the second inning when he allowed a leadoff double, but after that it was quite awhile before the Lookouts got a runner on base. He got consecutive strikeouts to end that second inning and retired twelve batters in a row to carry a shutout through five. Then it went awry in the sixth inning when a leadoff single broke that streak of good pitching from Rangel. The next batter hit a high chop over to Braden Shewmake at shortstop and he unwisely went to second base where he was unable to get the runner and the batter reached on a fielder’s choice (though it’s fair to say he may not have been able to get the runner at first base). An RBI single brought in the first run against Rangel and with two outs he coughed up the lead when a wild pitch brought home the second run of the inning. That sixth inning closed an otherwise dominant start from Rangel and turned the ball over to Hayden Deal in the bullpen. After being given a three run lead to work with Deal walked the first batter he faced but seemed poised to escape when he forced two ground outs to get with an out of ending the inning. Unfortunately a base hit came in time to score the run and cut the lead to 5-3. He then faced all of two batters in the 8th inning and allowed both to reach leading to the Braves to turn to Troy Bacon fresh off of an injured list stint. Bacon allowed an infield single to load the bases but was in a prime position to end the inning when he struck out the next two batters. This is when the game took a turn as a walk brought in a run to score and a ground ball got through Greyson Jenista at first base for a two run error. This gave Chattanooga the lead and Mississippi never caught back up.

Next Game: 9/16 @ (57-53) Chattanooga Lookouts @ 7:15 PM ET

Probable Starters

MIS: Freddy Tarnok (3-2, 2.41 ERA)

CHA: TBD

(55-59) Rome Braves, (45-67) Hickory Crawdads PPD

Next Game: 9/16 vs (45-67) Hickory Crawdads @ 5:00 PM ET

Probable Starters

ROM: Jake McSteen (2-4, 4.30 ERA)

HIC: Seth Nordlin (3-4, 4.74 ERA)

(52-64) Augusta GreenJackets 4, (57-59) Myrtle Beach Pelicans 0

Box Score

  • Cal Conley, SS: 2-4, BB, SB, RBI, .224/.317/.328
  • Justyn-Henry Malloy, 3B: 1-4, BB, .271/.397/.449
  • Cade Bunnell, 2B: 2-5, .216/.367/.433
  • Andrew Hoffman, SP: 7 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 8 K, 2.73 ERA
  • Kenny Wells, RP: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 7.56 ERA

Augusta’s bullpen had much more luck than Mississippi’s and Andrew Hoffman was dominant again to lead them to a win. It didn’t take much for the Jackets to take home a win, and who else but Braulio Vasquez could make the first run of the game happen. Vasquez led off in the third inning by getting hit by a pitch then stole second base for his 40th stolen base of the season. A fly out and a ground out later and Vasquez was strolling across home plate to give Augusta the lead. Vasquez had a day that few others have the weirdness to pull off, going 0-1 with a walk and two times being hit by a pitch. Augusta was quiet again until the sixth inning when they finally strung together an offense and put the game in a strong spot for them. Cade Bunnell led off with a single and came in two batters later on a base hit from Bryson Horne. Tyler Tolve walked with two outs to put two runners on and a single from Christian Robinson and error by the left fielder led to two more runs scoring to make the lead 4-0. This was all but the end for the Pelicans who went down with a whimper the rest of the game. Can birds whimper? Probably not they went down with a quiet squawk or something I don’t know.

Andrew Hoffman threw five no hit innings his last time on the mound for Augusta, and while he did not repeat that feat he did quite well for himself and solidified a solid debut season. Hoffman’s no hit bid ended with a one out single in the first inning, but confused about the existence of runners on base he decided he was not a fan and used the next pitch to force an inning ending double play. The next hit of the game came in the third inning, and that single was wiped out in about ten seconds as left fielder Landon Stephens threw out the runner trying to stretch the hit into a double. After that the Pelicans struggled to even get the ball out of the infield as over the final four innings of his start the only hit off of Hoffman was a bunt single. He retired nine straight batters after that bunt and struck out four of those to stretch him to 8 strikeouts on the day. Hoffman’s professional debut couldn’t have gone much better as in 7 starts after going with the Braves 12th round pick he posted a 2.73 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 29 23 innings. Kenny Well pitched a perfect eighth inning and picked up two strikeouts to shut down the Pelicans. Lisandro Santos pitched the ninth scoreless and sent the GreenJackets to a win.

Next Game: 9/16 @ (57-59) Myrtle Beach Pelicans @ 7:05 PM ET

Probable Starters

AUG: TBD

MB: Manuel Espinoza (4-8, 5.28 ERA)