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Atlanta Braves Minor League Recap - All-Star Edition: 6/17

Bethancourt goes yard, Myke Jones homers in the Southern League All-Star Game, and Wren steals the show at the Carolina League All-Star Game.

Myke Jones flashed the leather and smacked a homer in the Southern League All-Star Game tonight
Myke Jones flashed the leather and smacked a homer in the Southern League All-Star Game tonight
Mike Ehrmann

Gwinnett Braves 2, Indianapolis Indians 1

  • Christian Bethancourt, C: 3-4, HR(3), .278
  • Todd Cunningham, CF: 1-4, SB(10), .280
  • Jose Constanza, LF: 2-3, BB, 2 SB(14,15), .267
  • Phil Gosselin, 3B: 2-3, BB, 2B(17), .321
  • Yunesky Maya, SP: 6.2 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 4 K, 2.21 ERA
  • Juan Jaime, RP: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 2.39 ERA
Despite only scoring two runs, Gwinnett's meaningful players all had nice offensive nights. Christian Bethancourt collected three hits including his third homer of the year. Todd Cunningham was activated from the DL before the game and notched a single and a stolen base. Jose Constanza did Jose Constanza things, hitting two singles and stealing two bases. Phil Gosselin played third base again and reached three times. We're at the point where I'm honestly perplexed as to why he hasn't been called up yet. At the very least, he'd be a defensive and offensive improvement off the bench from Dan Uggla. And he can give the horribly struggling Chris Johnson a breather as well. Why is he still in the minors? Why is Dan Uggla still a thing?  (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

Yunesky Maya had a very strong appearance, shutting out the Indians over 6.2 innings of 5-hit ball. Juan Jaime came in to nail down the win in the ninth and was absolutely electric, striking out all three men he faced. He even prompted this from the Indians:

Southern League South All-Stars 6, Southern League North All-Stars 4

  • Myke Jones, CF: 1-4, HR, BB
  • Matt Kennelly, C: 0-2, BB
  • Williams Perez, SP: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K
  • J.R. Graham, RP: 0.2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 0 K
  • James Hoyt, RP: 0.2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 0 K
Myke Jones had himself quite a night at the All-Star game, smacking a home run and drawing a walk in addition to several fine plays in the field. Matt Kennelly came in to catch off the bench and drew a walk in 3 plate appearances. Williams Perez actually got to start the game, and tossed a scoreless inning with a hit and a strikeout of Cubs' top prospect Kris Bryant. J.R. Graham (I'm not sure how he was an All-Star either) and James Hoyt each tossed 0.2 innings of relief, and each gave up a homer. Yuck.
Former pro scout Bernie Pleskoff was at last night's game, and had a few thoughts to share on several Braves' prospects:
For those of you curious about Williams Perez, Nathanial Stoltz had a nice write up of him on Fangraphs yesterday. Here's a snippet:
The advantage Perez has is that in addition to his sinker–a pitch that traditionally boasts a large platoon split–he has a solid changeup. It arrives at 76-80 mph, giving it about 12 mph of speed separation, and like the fastball, it has solid movement. The pitch has allowed him to silence lefties (.224/.286/.263) about as much as righties (.206/.268/.252) this year. Perez also throws an inconsistent slider from 75-82 mph that’s a reasonable second offering to his fellow northpaws.

It’s all added up to a very strong introduction to the upper minors for the Venezuelan righthander, who owns a sub-2.00 ERA and has allowed just two home runs all season. He just turned 23 last month, so he’s not old for the level, and he may bring his sinking mix to the majors in the near future given the success he’s had. With his groundball ability and the changeup that can keep lefties from teeing off, he’s a good bet to be a functional if unexceptional big league starter for several years, assuming health.

California League All-Stars 3, Carolina League All-Stars 2

  • Jose Peraza, 2B: 0-2, K
  • Kyle Wren, LF-CF: 2-3, 2 SB, RBI
  • Greg Ross, RP: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 16 pitches/10 strikes
All three of Lynchburg's All-Stars made an appearance last night, but it Kyle Wren who stole the show. Wren was the only Carolina League All-Star to record multiple hits on the evening; he had a pair of singles, one of which drove in one of the team's two runs. He also showed off his wheels on the basepaths, swiping second base and third base. He was the only All-Star for either team to successfully steal a base on the evening. Jose Peraza got two at-bats at leadoff, and went 0-2 with a strikeout. Greg Ross hurled an impressive inning, allowing one hit and striking out a pair.

Sally League South All-Stars 4, Sally League North All-Stars 4 (F/10)

  • Victor Reyes, LF: 0-4, BB, K, CS
  • Victor Caratini, C: 0-2, BB, 2 K, R
The Rome Braves were represented in the Sally League All-Star game by the two Victors. Unfortunately, neither had a particularly good game. Each drew a walk, but went hitless otherwise. Caratini did score a run however. Reyes was thrown out trying to steal home on a blown play, so I wouldn't really hold that against him. The game ended in a tie after 10 innings, which is pretty much standard operating procedure for most minor league All-Star games.

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