Yesterday was not much of a good day for anyone in the Atlanta Braves system. Gwinnett lost their fourth straight and Mississippi got hammered in game four, but in positive news Drew Waters went deep and Kyle Wright keeps shoving.
(68-55) Gwinnett Stripers 2, (81-43) Durham Bulls 3
- Drew Waters, RF: 3-4, HR, RBI, .245/.334/.385
- Travis Demeritte, DH: 1-4, RBI, .286/.387/.558
- Cristian Pache, CF: 0-4, .264/.332/.413
- Kyle Wright, SP: 6 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 6 K, 3.18 ERA
- Jesse Biddle, RP: 2 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 2.84 ERA
While on the whole he has had the worst year of his career by a wide margin, Drew Waters has still shown flashes of the player that could break out at any moment and his last week of play has been one of those. Waters was the majority of Gwinnett’s offense Saturday night, recording three of their four hits while hitting his 10th home run of the season. He got off to a roaring start by ripping the first pitch of the game into center field for a hit, then went first to third on a base hit before scoring on a single from Travis Demeritte. That single from Demeritte was the final non-Waters hit in the game. Waters extended the lead with his aggression in the third inning, sending the first pitch of that at bat deep into the stands for a home run. The offense went into hibernation from there, and despite the strong start they got from Kyle Wright the bullpen couldn’t hold on to the lead and lost in extra innings. Waters is on a six-game stretch in which he is 10-for-24 and has three extra base hits for a 1.042 OPS.
Kyle Wright has been the top pitcher in the Triple-A East league this season and he followed up a complete game shutout in his last start with six shutout innings in this one to extend his scoreless streak to 16 innings. It wasn't all easy throughout for Wright but he scattered three baserunners across his first four innings to get through those without any real threats. His fifth inning got a bit tough with an infield hit and a four pitch walk with two outs, but the final hitter of the inning swung at the first pitch and grounded out to help Wright escape. He wiggled around another two out hit in the sixth inning to complete his six innings, and despite only having one clean inning he never seemed to be in any real danger. Immediately after he departed danger found the Stripers as Jesse Biddle allowed a game-tying two run home run in the seventh inning after hitting a batter with a pitch. He retired the side and finished a perfect eighth inning, but the damage was done as the Stripers offense couldn't do anything. Trevor Kelly pitched a scoreless ninth inning, but after Gwinnett threw up a blank in the top of the tenth Kelley issued two walks and then a sacrifice fly that walked the game off.
Next Game: 9/26 @ (81-43) Durham Bulls @ 1:05 PM ET
(2-2) Mississippi Braves 2, (2-2) Montgomery Biscuits 14
- Justin Dean, CF: 2-4, 2B
- Trey Harris, DH: 2-4
- Jefrey Ramos, PH: 1-1, HR, RBI
- William Woods, SP: 3 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 6.00 ERA
- Odalvi Javier, RP: 0.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K, 27.00 ERA
The Stripers had a tough game but the Mississippi Braves just had a bad one as the game went soaring away from them in a hurry. They had chances early, including a big one in the first inning. Justin Dean doubled to lead off the game and Trey Harris hit a single and advanced on an error to put runners at first and third with two outs, but the middle of the order failed to push across a run and the Braves wasted a golden opportunity in a potential close out game. Following those hits the Braves didn't have another until Shea Langeliers dropped a single in the fourth, and they trailed 2-0 at that point. The next time they had a hit they trailed 10-0 as the pitching put the game out of reach. Finally Mississippi got some garbage runs in the late innings, with the Biscuits giving them one in the 8th. Justin Dean led off the inning with his second hit of the game, then was allowed to advance to third base on defensive indifference and scored on a base hit from Luke Waddell. Jefrey Ramos tacked on a pinch hit home run in the 9th inning and maybe he should get a start in game five since no one else seems to want to hit.
William Woods was a surprising pick to get the ball in game four, but he did very well and had the Braves in a good position early. Woods retired eight of the first nine batters he faced with the only runner coming on a second inning walk. The leadoff hitter got a hit in on him the second time through the order, but he closed out the inning with a foreshadowing line out right to the second baseman to keep the shutout intact. Woods was not missing any bats the second time through the order, and following two hard hit balls in the third the game quickly got away from him. He walked the first batter of the fourth inning then allowed two singles and a two-run double before being pulled from the game. Troy Bacon spared Woods more suffering by striking out the side to strand two runners in scoring position, but he had a disaster of his own in the fifth and the game was put out of reach. Bacon allowed two runs and left two runners on before departing in the fifth inning, and Sean McLaughlin was no help in his place as he allowed both inherited runners to score to make it 6-0. McLaughlin had his own implosion in the sixth and allowed four more runs. Matt Withrow was merciful enough to give the Braves two innings of scoreless relief, but lost it in the ninth and allowed four more runs to really rub Mississippi’s face in it. Hopefully game five is better, and the Braves will be handing the ball to Alan Rangel to try to win the deciding game of the series.
Next Game: 9/26 vs (2-2) Montgomery Biscuits @ 6:05 PM ET
MIS: Alan Rangel