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Atlanta Braves Minor League Recap: Shewmake’s home run highlights sweep

Braden Shewmake hit a home run which keyed a Gwinnett comeback

Atlanta Braves v Minnesota Twins Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images

It was a big day down on the farm system, with all four of the Atlanta Braves affiliates taking home wins. The games weren’t easy and were filled with exciting late inning moments, a big comeback, and a fantastic performance from Jared Shuster.

(45-46) Gwinnett Stripers 7, (50-41) Memphis Redbirds 6

Box Score

  • Preston Tucker, LF: 2-5, 2 RBI, .258/.332/.408
  • Braden Shewmake, SS: 1-4, HR, BB, .249/.307/.378
  • Joe Dunand, 3B: 3-3, BB, RBI, .260/.351/.390
  • Connor Johnstone, SP: 2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 3.71 ERA
  • Michael Tonkin, RP: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 1.72 ERA

The Stripers feel deep into a hole in the first half of this game, but a Braden Shewmake home run kicked off a big comeback for a close win. Memphis’s Connor Thomas controlled the game for the first four innings, allowing two hits as his team jumped to a 5-0 lead. Thomas quickly ran out of leash in the fifth inning though, as Shewmake led off with that home run and then Chadwick Tromp and Greyson Jenista had consecutive singles that chased him from the game. A Joe Dunand walk loaded the bases with no outs in the inning, but Gwinnett managed to only come away with one run on a Preston Tucker ground out. They worried not from this, and in the sixth inning got back on the board again with a solo home run from Hernan Perez and a single from Dunand that scored Shewmake to bring Gwinnett within a run. Memphis added a run in the bottom of the sixth, but the Stripers had one more big inning left in them. Tromp and Dunand had singles in the eighth inning to put the tying run on base, and Preston Tucker had the hit to bring them back to down just a run. Travis Demeritte then gapped one, and the runners were off as they both scored to take the lead 7-6.

Huascar Ynoa was scheduled to make this start for Gwinnett, but he was scratched before the game and the Stripers had to turn to the bullpen to get them through nine innings. Connor Johnstone was the obvious opener pick, but he struggled in his second inning of work and allowed two runs on two hits to put Gwinnett behind early. Thomas Burrows followed by allowing a run in the third inning, and Silvino Bracho completed the early struggles by allowing two solo home runs in the fourth inning. After the Stripers fought back it again got tricky, with Jesus Cruz walking the leadoff hitter in the sixth inning then departing with an injury after falling down 2-0 to the next. Tyler Ferguson replaced him and walked that batter, then walked another to load the bases before allowing a run home on a wild pitch. Ferguson then managed to escape the inning with no further damage to keep Gwinnett close. Roel Ramirez pitched a scoreless eighth inning after Gwinnett took the lead and Michael Tonkin closed it out with a strong ninth inning that included two strikeouts.

Next Game: 7/23 @ (50-41) Memphis Redbirds @ 7:35 PM ET

(44-44) Mississippi Braves 2, (39-42) Montgomery Biscuits 1

Box Score

  • Vaughn Grissom, SS: 1-3, HBP, .448/.500/.621
  • Justin Dean, RF: 1-4, 2 RBI, .265/.365/.364
  • Justyn-Henry Malloy, LF: 0-1, 2 BB, HBP, .240/.387/.400
  • Kirby Yates, SP: 1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 6.91 ERA
  • Jared Shuster, SP: 6 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 8 K, 2.78 ERA
  • Lisandro Santos, RP: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 0.00 ERA

It was a quiet game for the Mississippi bats, but they came through when it mattered most to win this game. For starters, Vaughn Grissom was hit by a pitch in the third inning to extend that on base streak to 44, then got a single in the eighth to extend his 18 game hitting streak. Grissom not having a hit until the eighth put him in good company, as Biscuits starter John Doxakis and reliever Michael Mercado held the Braves hitless for six innings. Finally with two outs in the seventh inning Hendrik Clementina broke the streak, but Mississippi still trailed 1-0 going into the ninth inning. The Braves quickly got two outs, but got something brewing with consecutive singles by Jalen Miller and Jordan Cowan to put the tying run on second. Then the game went into delay and stayed there for more than an hour with the game on the line. After resumption of play, Hendrik Clementina drew a four pitch walk to load the bases, and Justin Dean put the Braves on top when he ripped a two run single into center field.

While the offense struggled early the pitching staff had no trouble keeping this game close. Kirby Yates struggled a bit in his first rehab inning with Mississippi, allowing a couple of hard hit balls to put runners on the corners, but he went to a couple of ridiculous split-changeups that recorded two strikeouts and helped him escaped the inning. Jared Shuster then took over and put up a third consecutive fantastic outing. Shuster retired eight of the first nine batters he faced and faced the minimum through his first three innings of work. A solo home run in the fifth inning was what put the Braves in that 1-0 hole, but Shuster didn’t allow a hit after that fifth inning and retired eight of the final nine batters he faced in the game. Lisandro Santos picked it up with a perfect ninth inning while striking out all three batters he faced. Justin Yeager then closed out the ninth inning while allowing one hit and striking out one batter.

Next Game: 7/23 @ (39-42) Montgomery Biscuits @ 7:05 PM ET

(52-36) Rome Braves 3, (43-45) Bowling Green Hot Rods 2

Box Score

  • Cal Conley, SS: 1-3, 2 BB, .333/.375/.500
  • Drew Campbell, CF: 2-3, HR, BB, .284/.345/.361
  • Beau Philip, 3B: 2-4, HR, RBI, .226/.342/.347
  • Luis De Avila, SP: 6 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 3.77 ERA
  • Trey Riley, RP: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 4.37 ERA

Unlike its elder siblings, Rome jumped out to an early lead in this one and then just held on for the ride. Beau Philip broke the seal in the second inning, driving a solo home run that put the Braves on top early. Two innings later it was Drew Campbell who went yard as he led off the inning with a home run to double the lead. Tyler Tolve followed Campbell by hitting a triple and Philip made it 3-0 with a base hit. Rome had little else in the way of sequencing out runs, as they reached base 14 times in the game but only went 1-9 with runners in scoring position.

Luis De Avila gave Rome some fantastic innings, but ran out of gas at the end to hurt his final line. De Avila allowed a leadoff double in the bottom of the first inning, but after escaping that without any damage it was smooth sailing. After a one out hit in the second inning De Avila allowed just two more runners to reach through the sixth, with the first being an error that he immediately erased with a double play. De Avila came out for the seventh inning but immediately allowed three straight singles and had to be pulled from the game for Jose Montilla. Montilla allowed one more runner to score on a sacrifice fly, but got out of the seventh inning with the Braves’s lead still intact. Montilla and Trey Riley combined to pitch three scoreless innings in relief with one hit and no walks allowed while striking out four batters.

Next Game: 7/23 @ (43-45) Winston-Salem Hot Rods @ 6:00 PM ET

(44-43) Augusta GreenJackets 6, (31-57) Columbia Fireflies 3

Box Score

  • Francisco Floyd, SS: 2-4, 2B, BB, .250/.308/.292
  • Geraldo Quintero, 3B: 0-4, BB, .271/.357/.443
  • Adam Zebrowski, C: 3-4, 2B, BB, .232/.353/.412
  • Luis Vargas, SP: 5 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 5 K, 3.76 ERA
  • Tyler Owens, RP: 2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 4.67 ERA

Augusta gave us the only relatively drama-free game, taking a fairly easy win over the Fireflies to kick off the second half. Both teams were quiet until the fourth inning when Francisco Floyd led off the fourth inning with a double. Two walks followed to load the bases and a wild pitch scored the game’s first run. Braulio Vasquez then came up with the big hit of the inning to score both runners and put Augusta on top 3-0. In the sixth inning the GreenJackets loaded the bases with no outs on singles from Brandon Parker, Adam Zebrowski, and Stephen Paolini. All three of those runs came home to score, with a sacrifice fly knocking in the first and a two run Eliezel Stevens single giving Augusta a 6-1 lead. Zebrowski featured prominently in both of these innings, having drawn one of those fourth inning walks, and it is no surprise given he had three hits and a walk on the day.

Luis Vargas started this game off with a flourish, retiring ten straight batters to open the game. Finally a walk in the fourth inning broke that streak up, and Vargas allowed a run in the fourth inning on a double and a sacrifice fly. Vargas got into trouble again in the fifth inning when he loaded the bases on two walks and an infield single, but a clutch double play ended the inning and Columbia’s biggest threat to tie the game up. Tyler Owens allowed the first two batters he faced in relief to get hits off of him, then a sacrifice fly that made the game 6-2. Owens struck out four batters in his two innings of relief and didn't allow another run, although he ran into problems in the seventh inning with two walks. Alex Segal recorded three strikeouts in the eighth inning, but both of the batters he didn’t strike out got hits which scored the third run against Augusta. Rolddy Munoz wasted no time closing the game out with a nine pitch perfect ninth inning.

Next Game: 7/23 @ (47-38) Columbia Fireflies @ 6:05 PM ET

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