All-in-all, it was an extremely successful Friday for Atlanta’s minor league affiliates as they went a combined 7-1 on the day. Owen Murphy provided a bulk of the highlights as the 2022 first-rounder struck out 8 across seven no-hit innings.
(52-58) Gwinnett Stripers 10, (41-71) Charlotte Knights 1
- Luke Williams, LF: 2-5, HR, 4 RBI, R
- Vaughn Grissom, 2B: 2-4, HR, RBI, R
- Yolmer Sanchez, 3B: 1-4, 2B, 3 RBI, R, BB
- Dylan Dodd, SP: 6 IP, 6 H, ER, BB, 4 K
Dylan Dodd was excellent, Vaughn Grissom homered, Luke Williams launched a grand slam and the Stripers routed Charlotte to the tune of a 10-1 win on Friday night.
On the mound, Dodd spun six innings of one-run ball while striking out four for Gwinnett. While Dodd was doing his thing, the offense struck gold in the top of the third inning. With one out, Grissom launched a solo homer over the left field wall to give Gwinnett the 1-0 lead. Jesus Aguilar then singled as Chadwick Tromp followed that up with a walk to put Aguilar into scoring position. A Hoy Park double scored Aguilar to make it 2-0 and two batters later, a Yolmer Sanchez double plated Tromp and Park to extend the Gwinnett lead to 4-0.
As mentioned above, Dodd tossed a great start, keeping the opposition off the board for the first five frames before giving up one run in the sixth as the Knights were able to cut the lead to 4-1. Throwing 74 pitches, Dodd tossed 56 strikes in what was an encouraging performance by the lefty.
After the third inning, the Gwinnett offense went quiet, as it wouldn’t be until the eighth inning before the Stripers would add on to their lead. However, once the sixth inning came, the Stripers scored six times to extend their lead to 10-1.
In the sixth, Aguilar and Tromp got things started with one-out walks as Park singled into left field to score Aguilar to make it a 5-1 Gwinnett game. With two outs, Joe Hudson walked before Sanchez drew a free pass of his own with the bases loaded to score Tromp. In the next at-bat, Luke Williams decided to get in on the offensive fun as he sent a 2-1 pitch over the left center field wall for a grand slam to break things open at 10-1 for the Stripers. That score would hold as the final.
(48-56) Mississippi Braves 8, (48-57) Rocket City Trash Pandas 5
- Drew Lugbauer, 1B: 2-4, HR, 3 HR, R
- Luke Waddell, SS: 1-2, HR, 2 RBI, R, BB
- Bryson Horne, DH: 2-3, 2 2B, 2 RBI, R
- Nolan Kingham, SP: 2.2 IP, 4 H, 4 ER, 3 BB, 4 K
Mississippi plated three runs in their final at-bat to take game one of a doubleheader against Rocket City.
The Braves scored first in this one, plating three runs in the top of the second inning to stake starter Nolan Kingham to a 3-0 lead. Jesse Franklin V singled to leadoff the frame as Cade Bunnell walked to move him into scoring position. After Cal Conley forced out to retire Franklin at third, Bunnell advanced to second on the play. A Drew Campbell single loaded the bases before the first of two Bryson Horne doubled on the day drove in a pair of runners to make it 2-0 Mississippi. Cody Milligan then hit a sac fly into center field to score Campbell to extend the lead to 3-0.
Rocket City would respond by scoring four runs in the home half of the third inning, taking the 4-3 lead over the Braves. All four runs would come off of Braves starter Kingham before he gave way to Domingo Gonzalez and the Mississippi bullpen.
Mississippi retook the lead in the top of the fifth frame, scoring twice to make it 5-4 Braves. Horne laced his second double of the game to leadoff the inning and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Milligan walked as Waddell brought Horne home on a sac fly to tie the game at 4-4. With two gone, Drew Lugbauer singled into right field to score Milligan and give the Braves the lead.
Leading by just one run, the Braves added some much-needed insurance runs in the final frame. In the seventh inning, Mississippi brought home three runs to extend their lead to 8-4. After Milligan flew out, Waddell homered into the left field seats. Tyler Tolve doubled as Lugbauer homered over the center field wall to tack on.
The Trash Pandas scored one run in the bottom of the seventh inning but reliever Ty Tice was able to slam the door on the win.
(49-56) Mississippi Braves 10, (48-58) Rocket City Trash Pandas 7 (Makeup of August 9)
- Jesse Franklin V, 1-3, HR, 3 RBI, BB
- Hudson Potts, 3B: 2-4, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 R
- Luke Waddell, SS: 1-2, 2 RBI, R, 3 BB
- Jose Montilla, SP: 2 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, K
Game two also went in favor of Mississippi on Friday to give them two wins on the day.
Things didn’t start off in Mississippi’s favor, as the Trash Pandas jumped out to an early 3-0 lead after the bottom of the first inning off of starter Jose Montilla. However, the Braves took their first lead in the following half inning, scoring four times to take a 4-3 lead.
Cal Conley walked to leadoff the frame as Hudson Potts laced a double to score Conley, making it a 3-1 game. Potts then advanced to third on an Arden Pabst fly out before scoring on a COdy Milligan groundout. Luke Waddell drew a walk before Jesse Franklin V homered into left field to give the Braves the 4-3 lead.
In the back-and-forth nature of this one, Rocket City got the lead back in the home half of the second as the Trash Pandas took a 5-4 lead.
Mississippi’s offense would respond, scoring four runs of their own in the top of the third inning to retake the advantage.
In the top of the third, the first four Braves would reach in the inning. Javie Valdes reached via error before advancing to third on a Landon Stephens double. Cal Conley notched an RBI-single into center field to score Valdes to tie the game at 5-5. Potts singled into left field to score Stephens to give the Braves the 6-5 lead. Cody Milligan singled to load the bases before Waddell doubled into right field to plate two more Braves, extending the lead to 8-5 Mississippi.
Rocket City cut the lead to 8-6, scoring one run in the bottom of the third off of reliever Hayden Deal.
In the top of the fifth, the Braves drew four consecutive one-out walks to tack on another run to extend the Mississippi lead to 9-5. On the same play, Milligan stole home to extend the lead to 10-6 Braves.
While the Trash Pandas scored in the bottom of the sixth off of Mississippi reliever Hayden Harris, the Braves were able to conserve the 10-7 victory.
(49-57) Rome Braves 5, (47-54) Winston-Salem Dash 3
- David McCabe, 3B: 2-4, 2B, 3 RBI, R, BB
- Drake Baldwin, C: 1-3, 2B, 2 R
- KeShawn Ogans, 2B: 2-5, 2 RBI
- Daniel Martinez, SP: 5 IP, 3 H, ER, 2 BB, 5 K
Rome used a late comeback to take home the win over Winston-Salem on Friday.
The Braves wasted no time in this one, scoring in their first appearance at the plate. With two outs in the inning, Drake Baldwin sent his 21st double of the season into left field before he scored on a single off the bat of David McCabe to give Rome the 1-0 lead.
Rome starter Daniel Martinez was great through the first four innings, keeping the opposition off the board. But the Dash would tag Martinew for two runs – one earned – to take the 2-1 lead. Jared Johnson took over for Martinez in the top of the sixth inning and gave up an additional run as Winston-Salem took the 3-1 advantage.
After scoring one run in the first inning, the Braves wouldn’t score again until the bottom of the seventh. Nacho Alvarez singled before Baldwin walked to move him into scoring position. David McCabe then doubled into center field to tie the game, as both Alvarez and Baldwin scored to make it a 3-3 game.
Tied at 3-3, the Braves retook the lead in the bottom of the eighth. Alvarez drew a one-out walk and two batters later, McCabe reached on an error to move Alvarez to second. Alvarez and McCabe performed a double steal to put both of them in scoring position and KeShawn Ogans took advantage, singling into center field to score the two of them to make it 5-3 Rome.
Leading by two runs, Rob Griswold would be tasked with getting the save and despite giving up one hit would strike out one to close the door on the Rome win.
(49-56) Augusta GreenJackets 3, (48-55) Salem Red Sox 1
- Drew Compton, DH: 2-4, 2B, R
- Pier-Oliver Boucher, LF: 1-4, 2B
- Kade Kern, RF: 1-4, RBI
- Owen Murphy, SP: 6.1 IP, H, ER, BB, 8 K
Simply put, Owen Murphy was phenomenal in what was arguably the best professional start of his career. Across the first six innings in this one, the 2022 first-rounder didn’t allow a single hit. While that might stand out as impressive in its own right, Murphy also fanned eight batters in the win for the GreenJackets.
While Murphy was causing complications for the opposing offense, the August offense was struggling almost as much. Held scoreless through the first six innings, the GreenJackets finally broke through, scoring two runs in the top of the seventh frame. After Kade Kern grounded out to start the inning, Jose Dilone singled into right field. Nick Clarno then reached on an error before a fielder’s choice off the bat of Tyler Collins allowed Dilone to score, giving Augusta the 1-0 lead. With Ambioris Tavrez at the plate, Clarno would score as a balk was called, extending the GreenJacket lead to 2-0.
Carrying a no-hitter into the bottom of the seventh, Murphy allowed a leadoff triple, ending the no-no bid. Samuel Strickland subsequently took over for Murphy before the triple would later come home to score on a sac fly, as Salem cut the Augusta lead in half to 2-1.
The GreenJackets got that run back in the top half of the eighth inning. Drew Compton doubled into right field to leadoff the inning and advanced to third on a wild pitch in the next at-bat. After Pier-Oliver Boucher struck out, Kade Kern singled on a tough ground ball to the shortstop, allowing Compton to score to make it 3-1 Augusta.
That score would hold as Strickland would hold Salem scoreless over the last 2.2 innings, as the GreenJackets took the game.
(25-22) FCL Braves 4, (20-26) FCL Rays 2
- Douglas Glod, RF: 1-3, RBI
- Isaiah Drake, DH: 2-4, R, BB, SB
- Diego Benitez, SS: 2-4, R
- Riley Gowens, SP: 2.2 IP, H, R, 2 BB, 3 K
In his second straight multi-hit game, 2023 5th-rounder Isaiah Drake is hopefully turning things around at the dish in his pro debut.
Going 2-4 with a run scored, a walk and a stolen base, Drake helped lead the FCL offense on Friday, outsourcing the Rays by a 4-2 final.
Drake wasn’t the only 2023 draftee making an impact in this game, as 9th-rounder Riley Gowens made his first pro start on the mound. While he only went 2.2 innings, the righty struck out three batters but issued two walks and a run to the Rays, who took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second.
While the Braves were held scoreless through the first two innings, the offense broke through in a big way in the bottom of the third. Drake laced a leadoff single and subsequently advanced to second on an error on a pickoff attempt. Brandon Parker then walked as Drake advanced to third on a wild pitch. The defensive miscues by the Rays benefitted the Braves tremendously, as Douglas Glod drove Drake in on a sac fly to tie the game at 1-1.
Diego Benitez singled before Robert Gonzalez reached via error, which plated Parker to give the Braves the 2-1 lead. In the next at-bat, Harry Owen singled into center field, driving in both Benitez and Gonzalez to extend the Braves lead to 4-1.
The Braves would scatter a few more hits the rest of the game but couldn’t bring across another run. However, it wouldn’t matter as the bullpen limited the offensive damage to just one additional run, as the Braves sealed off the 4-2 win.
(14-30) DSL Braves 3, (35-10) DSL Dodgers Bautista 1
- Junior Garcia, RF: 1-3
- Luis Guanipa, CF: 0-2, SF, RBI
- Jeremy Reyes, SP: IP, 2 H, R
In their first game of the day, the DSL squad notched just two hits, but it proved to be enough as they took down the Dodgers 3-1.
All three RBI in the game for the Braves came from guys who failed to register a hit. The Dodgers plated the first run in the top of the first inning to jump out to a 1-0 lead.
The Braves would do all of their scoring in the bottom of the fifth frame. Carlos Monteverde and Josnaider Orellana drew back-to-back walks to leadoff before a sac bunt by Roiber Niazoa advanced both runners into scoring position while Niazoa reached on an error to load the bases. Carlos Cordero then drew a bases-loaded walk to tie the game at 1-1. A sac fly off the bat of Luis Guanipa in the next at-bat gave the Braves their first lead of the game, scoring Orellana. John Estevez followed that up with by grounding into a forceout which scored Niazoa to make it 3-1 Braves.
Braves starter Jeremy Reyes only went one inning, leaving the other six frames up to the bullpen, which exceeded expectations with limited output from its offense. Luis Arestigueta and Rayven Antonio combined to toss six scoreless innings, allowing just two hits, three walks and striking out four. With two scoreless frames of his own, the 17-year-old Antonio lowered his season ERA to 1.16 across 31 innings.
(14-31) DSL Braves 3, (36-10) DSL Dodgers Bautista 15
- John Gil, SS: 2-3, 2B, BB
- Elian Garcia, CF: 1-3, 2B, R
- Sebastian Estiven, SP: 0.2 IP, 3 H, 4 ER, K
Game two for the DSL Braves went about as poorly as it can get. Each of the six pitchers for the Braves in the game allowed at least one run as the Dodgers knocked them around for 15 runs on 12 hits.
The Braves, on the other hand, managed just three runs on six hits in the loss. With the lead already 8-0, the Braves finally got on the board in the bottom of the third, as Mario Baez drew a walk, on which Elian Garcia scored on a wild pitch to finally put the Braves in the run column.
The Braves also scored in the bottom of the fourth inning, again on a wild pitch, as Angel Nieblas scampered home to make it a 13-2. Taking advantage of two errors in the bottom of the sixth inning, Michael Baez singled home Carlos Monteverde to make it 15-3 which would hold as the final.