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Braves Minors 7/26 Recap: Perez, Sims, Whalen Have Strong Starts; Touki Struggles

Several strong pitching performances in the minors last night, although Touki Toussaint's was not one of them as he struggled after dominating in his previous start

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

(57-46) Charlotte Knights 3 vs. (51-50) Gwinnett Braves 5

Box Score

  • Mallex Smith, CF: 1-4, SB, Outfield Assist, .221/.264/.292
  • Jose Peraza, 2B: 0-4, .291/.316/.368
  • Todd Cunningham, RF: 1-2, 1 2B, 2 RBI, BB, .256/.325/.332
  • Williams Perez, SP: 5.2 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 1.16 ERA
  • Peter Moylan, RP: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K, 3.86 ERA

The Gwinnett Braves ride a strong rehab start from Williams Perez and beat Charlotte, 5-3. Williams has been excellent in his rehab appearances for Gwinnett, which means that given Manny Banuelos is on an innings limit, we may be seeing him move to the bullpen in the majors sooner rather than later as Perez makes his return. Gwinnett's middle relief almost let Charlotte get back in this one as Jake Brigham and David Peterson gave up 3 runs in 2.1 innings of work. The offense for Gwinnett was predicated on moving guys over and manufacturing runs as they only had two extra base hits on the night. Todd Cunningham is slowly getting over his demotion hangover and had a productive night while Barrett Kleinknecht connected for a solo homer. Mallex Smith did get a hit and a stolen base and showed off his arm as well as he gunned a runner down at home from center (his 8th outfield assist this year). Jose Peraza went hitless to snap his 13 game hitting streak.

(52-46) Mobile BayBears 3 vs. (50-48) Mississippi Braves 0

Box Score

  • Sean Godfrey, LF: 3-4, 1 2B, .232/.263/.295
  • Rio Ruiz, 3B: 0-4, 2 K, .207/.316/.260
  • Lucas Sims, SP: 5.2 IP, 1 H, 2 ER, 5 BB, 8 K, 3.72 ERA
  • Mauricio Cabrera, RP: 1.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 K, 7.36 ERA

The offense for Mississippi struggled mightily as they were defeated by the BayBears 3-0. Despite a strong leadoff performance by outfielder Sean Godfrey and out hitting the BayBears, Mississippi could not push across any runs in the game. Part of the problem offensively has been Rio Ruiz who, after showing signs of a turnaround, has been miserable at the plate of late. He has been held hitless in his last 8 games and during that period he also hasn't walked once and has struck out 12 times. Its a shame the offense struggled so much because Lucas Sims had his second outing in AA and was mostly excellent if a bit wild. The 5 walks weren't pretty necessarily, but he only gave up 1 hit to go along with 8 strikeouts in 5.2 innings. His line has him on the hook for 2 runs, but one of them was an inherited runner scoring courtesy of Bryton Trepagnier who struggled in relief. Lucas is beginning to show more signs that the promotion to AA is doing him a lot of good and putting him back on track as one of Atlanta's better prospects.

(49-51) Carolina Mudcats 1 vs. (57-43) Myrtle Beach Pelicans 3

Box Score

  • Connor Lien, RF: 1-4, 1 3B, Outfield Assist (15), .292/.344/.436
  • Dustin Peterson, LF: 2-3, 1 BB, 1 run, .259/.334/.365
  • Jose Briceno, C: 0-3, .184/.224/.269
  • Rob Whalen, SP: 5.2 IP, 6 H, 3 R (2 ER), 3 BB, 1 K
  • Andrew Waszak, RP: 2.1 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 K, 4.16 ERA
Another tough offensive game as Carolina fell to the Pelicans 3-1. Rob Whalen, in his debut since being acquired from the Mets, had an excellent outing in going 5.2 IP and giving up 2 earned runs. He was very strong through the first four innings before the Pelicans seemed to figure him out a bit in the 5th and 6th. Andrew Waszak came on in relief and pitched 2.1 scoreless innings. Connor Lien accounted for the only extra-base hit for the Mudcats while also notching his 15th outfield assist on the year. Lien is really pushing for a promotion to AA and will almost certainly start there at the beginning of next year. Dustin Peterson reached base 3 times, which is certainly encouraging given his second half struggles.

(43-56) Rome Braves 4 vs. (50-49) Asheville Tourists 16

Box Score

  • Ozhaino Albies, SS: 0-5, E(17), .316/.371/.412
  • Bryan De La Rosa, DH: 2-5, 2 2B, .204/.267/.343
  • Tanner Murphy, C: 2-3, 1 2B, 1 run, 1 RBI, .187/.278/.278
  • Touki Toussaint, SP: 3.1 IP, 10 H, 9 ER, 3 BB, 2 K, 5.65 ERA
  • Alec Grosser, RP: 2.2 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 5.38 ERA

Eww....Rome, and in particular Touki Toussaint, did not have a good today as Asheville throttled them 16-4. After giving up no hits whatsoever in his previous start, Touki was throwing batting practice in this one as he gave up 10 hits and 9 runs in just over three innings of work. He is a young, raw pitcher so setbacks are bound to happen. Hopefully he bounces back in his next outing. Alec Grosser came on in relief and didn't exactly stop the bleeding as he gave up 2 more runs and things escalated from there. Ozhaino Albies held hitless and made his 17th error in the field while Tanner Murphy and Bryan De La Rosa both had multi-hit games for Rome. De La Rosa has been coming around at the plate of late as he has boosted his average by 16 points in the last 10 games and is driving the ball better, especially in games where he gets to DH. Overall, not exactly a game Rome wants to remember.

(15-17) Danville Braves 8 vs. (15-17) Bluefield Blue Jays 6

Box Score

  • Jose Morel, RF: 2-5, 1 2B, 1 run, 2 RBI, .313/.385/.375
  • Luke Dykstra, 2B: 2-5, 1 RBI, .300/.346/.380
  • Carlos Castro, DH: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 BB, 1 RBI, 2 runs, .350/.376/.456
  • Trevor Belicek, SP: 4 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 4.18 ERA

Danville put on an offensive show with a very balanced performance from the team as they beat Bluefield 8-6. Every single player in the lineup reached base at least once and 5 players had multi-hit games. Jose Morel is definitely a player to keep and eye on as he already had a few games with Rome last year and has been excellent for Danville this year. Luke Dykstra also continued his excellent hitting down in rookie ball as well with a couple of hits and an RBI. The pitching from Danville was mostly excellent as they only gave up three earned runs, but a throwing error by Jeff Campbell led to three unearned runs scoring.

GCL Braves - Had the day off

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