Tuesdays are a good night on the Atlanta Braves farm. For the second time in three weeks, all four teams walked away victorious. This may come as a surprise to most, but Michael Harris II reached base... again.
Here’s how it went down Tuesday night on the Braves farm.
Gwinnett (16-15) 8, Durham Bulls (12-19) 4
- Braden Shewmake, SS:4-for-4, 2 2B, 4 R, 2 BB
- Drew Waters, DH: 0-for-6, 3 K
- Pat Valaika, 1B: 3-for-5, 1 2B, 1 RBI
- Chadwick Tromp, C: 2-for-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 4 RBI, 1 BB, 2 K
- Touki Toussaint, SP: 4 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 4 BB, 7 K
It’s a Tuesday, so we know for certain Pat “Mr. Tuesday Night” Valaika went off. He seems to shine on the first night of the playing week, and this week was no different as he racked up three more hits and his 23rd RBI of the season. Braden Shewmake reached base six times, including a pair of doubles while scoring half the Stripers runs. Six Stripers had multi-hit games including Chadwick Tromp who slugged his sixth home run of the season.
Touki Toussaint had a rough go, but still continues to strike out hitters. Unfortunately, he had another high-walk performance, marking his fourth outing this season that he’s had at least three walks. Nolan Kingham came on for two strong innings as his solid season out of the bullpen continues, recording his first win of the year. An unearned run finally crossed against William Woods, but it was another appearance where the fast-riser looked like a valuable bullpen piece at Triple-A.
Mississippi (12-16) 5, Chattanooga Lookouts (14-14) 3
- Michael Harris II, CF: 1-for-5, 1 R, 2 K
- Luke Waddell, SS: 2-for-4, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 1 BB
- Justin Dean, RF: 2-for-4, 1 2B, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 SB
- Jalen Miller, DH: 4-for-4, 2 2B, 2 R
- Tanner Gordon, SP: 5 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 1 BB, 8 K
The good news is Tanner Gordon looked much better in his second Double-A, but he’s not out of the woods just yet. He missed a lot of bats, striking out eight, but those that he didn’t made it count: He allowed two home runs and a double among his five hits. Troy Bacon pitched 1.2 innings of shutout ball and the greatest reliever on earth Victor Vodnik had another sensational outing, striking out all four hitters he got out to hold the lead. Justin Maese struck out the side to lock down the save.
Yes, Michael Harris II reached base. That’s 28 in a row and with the hit, that’s a 15-game hitting streak. It’s really ridiculous at this point. What is also nice is Justin Dean finding his groove again after a tough start in Gwinnett. He’s hit in his last three and had two hits and a stolen base on Tuesday, so hopefully that dynamic and fun-to-watch Justin Dean is on his way back. CJ Alexander hit a home run, his second of the year, and Jalen Miller had the second four-hit night on the Braves farm (remember Shewmake did it?).
Rome (15-13) 6, Winston-Salem Dash (15-12) 1
- Vaughn Grissom, SS: 2-for-5, 2 RBI
- Christian Robinson, RF: 2-for-4, 1 R, 2 RBI, 2 K
- Landon Stephens, DH: 1-for-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2 K
- Andrew Hoffmann, SP: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 8 K
The Rome Braves wasted little time making amends for their first losing week of the season. Most importantly, and not unsurprisingly, Andrew Hoffmann bounced back in impressive style after his first stinker of the season. The young righty went five strong, landing 51 of 77 pitches for strikes while striking out eight and walking none. Lisandro Santos did all the work in relief, pitching four scoreless to close it out.
After a quiet week at the plate, some familiar faces got back into the swing of things (sorry for the terribly placed pun). Vaughn Grissom had two big hits, driving in two and Landon Stephens found that power stoke with his ninth bomb of the season. Christian Robinson, after a middling debut 2021 season, has yet to relent in 2022, picking up two more hits on Tuesday afternoon, driving in two. He’s now hitting a robust .321 with an impressive .851 OPS. Not a bad guy to have hitting in the nine hole.
Augusta (16-12) 4, Columbia Fireflies (10-18) 3
- Caleb Durbin, 2B: 1-for-3, 1 HR, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 K
- Brandol Mezquita, LF: 2-for-4, 1 2B
- Cal Conley, SS: 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 K
- AJ Smith-Shawver, SP: 5 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 3 BB, 12 K
In this week’s Braves MiLB preview we talked about how AJ Smith-Shawver was heating up, with back-to-back seven strikeout games. Well, now the exciting young righty is on fire, striking out 12 Fireflies on Tuesday night. He was in line for the win, but unfortunately Peyton Williams blew the save. Augusta came firing back and Darling Florentino, a former infielder, pitched a scoreless eighth and Rob Griswold picked up his third save of the season.
One of our favorite stories of the season has been Caleb Durbin and Brandol Mezquita turning into actual prospects. Their run continued Tuesday night. Durbin belted his second home run of the year and Mezquita had another multi-hit game, his fifth in seven May games. This team is playing solid baseball right now.