Ozzie Albies gives Atlanta a share of first-place with walk-off drive; Ty Tolve hits first pro homer 

 Thursday, August 12, 2021

-Clint Manry 

The Braves now have a chance to sweep the Reds today, following an extra-inning walk-off win on Wednesday night. Ozzie Albies came through in a BIG way, with the game-winning long ball in the 11th inning…

The dinger was no. 19 for Albies, who now carries a 110 wRC+ through 113 games this season. He really needed last night’s performance. So far in the August, Albies is hitting just .167, with Wednesday’s longball just his second XBH this month.

Down on the farm there’s plenty to talk about from last night. Righty Ian Anderson took his first step to returning to Atlanta when he started for Gwinnett in Game 1 of its doubleheader.

Anderson threw 64 pitches (35 strikes) in three innings yesterday, and though he did allow a few runs, what matters is that he’s back on the mound. Hopefully he’ll be back in the Braves’ starting rotation in the next few weeks.

For the Stripers offense, Wednesday was all about prospect outfielder Cristian Pache, who homered in both games against Durham, tallying a total of five RBI for the day.

The two dingers on Wednesday gives Pache nine for the season in Triple-A, and while it hasn’t been a great year for him overall, the Braves top prospect still sports a 110 wRC+ in the minors this season. A hot stretch could possibly get him added to the big league roster next month.

Down in Double-A, the M-Braves kept its magical season going, this time off the backs of starter Alan Rangel’s ten strikeouts. Mississippi shutout Biloxi on Wednesday.

Rangel was just filthy yesterday, and for the year, the 22-year-old now sports a K rate of 11.4 K/9 at the Double-A level. Rangel has always been a solid pitcher, but he’s having a career season in 2021.

Also of note for the M-Braves is the incredible stretch of hitting by CJ Alexander. The 25-year-old homered again on Wednesday, giving him back-to-back games with a long ball as he’s now hitting .286 over his last eight games. If you recall, I had Alexander on my Braves Top 30 to begin the year but recently excluded him from the list in my midseason update. The third baseman is still hitting just .167 overall this season, but it appears he’s determined to turn things around at the plate.

It was also an important night for lefty Corbin Clouse, who made his Double-A debut for the 2021 campaign. Clouse had shoulder surgery last year and has been recovering slowly. The 26-year-old pitched 13 innings with the FCL Braves before getting his new assignment with the M-Braves, and given his experience as a pro, as long as he progresses well he should be in Gwinnett in no time.

For High-A Rome, Wednesday night featured a big win when outfielder Andrew Moritz drove in the go-ahead RBI single in extra-innings.

There wasn’t much offense in the R-Braves win last night, however, 2021 draftee Luke Waddell, star prospect Michael Harris II and Moritz each chipped in with RBIs. Jake McSteen made the start for Rome and pitched what will probably go down as his best outing of the year. McSteen struck out nine in seven innings and allowed just three hits.

Perhaps the most exciting bit of action down on the farm last night, though, was Tyler Tolve’s first career home run as a professional. Augusta was in cruise control by the seventh inning of its game against Kannapolis, but the lefty-hitting Tolve gave the GreenJackets another spark when he drove an oppo-shot over the left field wall. The 17th-round pick from this year’s draft seems to be enjoying his time in the Braves organization so far as Tolve is now hitting .250 in his first five games in Single-A. Outfielder Landon Stephens also enjoyed another strong performance at the plate on Wednesday, finishing 2 for 4 with a homer. Stephens — an UDFA by the Braves — now has 13 long balls this season and is hitting .244 in 76 games with the GreenJackets.

Overall, Wednesday was a productive day for the Braves organization, and more importantly, a huge step in the right direction for the big league team. With the Phillies squandering its series versus the Dodgers, losing its last two in a row, Atlanta has strong chance at taking sole possession of first-place in the NL East today. With the young Kyle Muller set to take the mound tonight at 5:10 PM (ET), a win over Cincy on Thursday would no doubt become the highlight of the 2021 season so far. We’ll see what happens… but I’m loving the determination of this team right now.

Here are your scores and key stats from everything Braves on Wednesday…


W, 8-6 (F/11) vs. Reds

SP, T. Toussaint – 5 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 5 K, HR

2B, O. Albies – 2 for 5, HR, 3 RBI, SB

CF, G. Heredia – 1 for 5, HR, 2 RBI

3B, A. Riley – 2 for 5, 2B, 2 RBI


W, 4-3 vs. Durham

W, 5-3 vs. Durham

SP, I. Anderson – 3 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 3 K

SP, H. Ynoa – 4 ⅔ IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 7 K

CF, C. Pache – 4 for 6, 2 HR, 2B, 5 RBI

SS, O. Arcia – 2 for 3, 2 HR, 3 RBI

3B/1B, J. Camargo – 2 for 6, 2B, 2 R

2B, R. Goins – 2 for 6, HR, RBI 


W, 6-0 vs. Biloxi 

SP, A. Rangel – (W), 6 IP, 2 H, BB, 10 K

RP, C. Clouse – 1 IP, BB, 3 K

LF, J. Pearson – 2 for 3, 3 RBI

3B, C. Alexander – 1 for 3, HR, 2 RBI

SS, W. Rijo – 2 for 4, 2B, 2 R

RF, G. Jenista – 1 for 3, 2B, R


W, 5-4 (F/11) vs. Hickory

SP, J. McSteen – 7 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, BB, 9 K, HR

RF, M. Harris – 1 for 4, RBI, R

SS, L. Waddell – 1 for 4, RBI, R

LF, A. Moritz – 1 for 5, RBI

*Andrew Mortitz hit go-ahead RBI single in the 11th, scoring Riley Delgado. 

(bold = 2021 draftee)


W, 12-3 vs. Kannapolis 

SP, R. Rodriguez – (W), 7 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 7 K, HR

RF, L. Stephens – 2 for 4, HR, 2B, 4 RBI

C, T. Tolve – 2 for 4, HR, 2 RBI

LF, C. Robinson – 1 for 4, 2 RBI, R

1B, C. Bunnell – 1 for 3, 2B, RBI, 2 R

(bold = 2021 draftee)

Bullpen comes through for Atlanta in win over Cincy, while Shea Langeliers homers twice for M-Braves and Tanner Gordon strikes out 10 for Augusta

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

-Clint Manry

For the next week or so I’ll be in Tucson, AZ for work, and I just arrived yesterday evening, so I’m a bit behind on today’s recap. However, I did get to catch the final few innings of the Braves/Reds game last night, in which the Atlanta bullpen finally came through. A quartet of relievers – Luke Jackson, Richard Rodriguez, Tyler Matzek and Will Smith – came in with the Braves up by one, and all four combined to toss three scoreless innings while striking out three. Tuesday’s victory was huge for Atlanta as they now find themselves just one game behind Philadelphia for first-place in the NL East. Remember… the Phillies are in the midst of a tough series with the Dodgers, so the Braves have a nice shot to take over the no. 1 spot.

Also of note from yesterday: Shea Langeliers homered twice… again… as he and Lugbauer powered the M-Braves to a win. Langeliers’ 19 home runs this season is tied for the most in Double-A’s South League, and the star catcher is now hitting .270 to go along with a 139 wRC+ — the latter of which ranks fourth in the league. Coming out of nowhere in 2021, and now on my latest Braves Top 30, Lugbauer is hitting a cool .251 with 14 homers of his own (134 wRC+). This Mississippi club is incredible and is probably the single most talented minor league team in all of full-season baseball.

Mississppi’s Freddy Tarnok, Rome’s Jared Shuster and Augusta’s Tanner Gordon both continued their strong 2021 campaigns on Tuesday. Tarnok is now averaging 14.9 strikeouts per nine in Double-A, while sporting a 2.08 ERA. Shuster is at 11.75 K/9 and a 3.71 ERA at High-A. And Gordon is sitting at 10.1 / 3.43 at the Single-A level. All three of these guys are featured on my latest Top 30, with Gordon cracking the list at no. 26 now that he’s found his groove with the GreenJackets. This is a trio of prospect starting pitchers to keep an eye on.

Hopefully I’ll have more time to write, but below I’ve added scores and key stats from Tuesday’s Braves and minor league action…


W, 3-2 vs. Braves

SP, D. Smyly – (W), 6 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K, HR

LF, A. Duvall – 1 for 4, HR, 2 RBI

RF, J. Soler – 2 for 3, 2B, BB


PPD vs. Durham


W, 8-2 vs. Biloxi

SP, F. Tarnok – (W), 5.1 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, BB, 9 K, HR

C, S. Langeliers – 4 for 4, 2 HR, 4 RBI

DH, D. Lugbauer – 2 for 3, 2 HR, 3 RBI, BB

SS, B. Shewmake – 1 for 4, 2B, R

3B, C. Alexander – 1 for 4, HR, RBI


L, 8-7 vs. Hickory

SP, J. Shuster – 4 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 5 K

CF, J. Franklin – 4 for 5, 2 HR, 2B, 4 RBI

2B, B. Philip – 4 for 4, HR, 2 RBI, SB

1B, B. Langhorne – 2 for 4, 2B, R

3B, L. Waddell – 1 for 4, 2 R, BB

(bold = 2021 draftee)


W, 5-1 vs. Kannapolis

SP, T. Gordon – (W), 7 IP, 3 H, ER, BB, 10 K, HR

CF, S. Paolini – 1 for 3, 2B, R

SS, V. Grissom – 2 for 4, RBI, R, SB

1B, L. Stephens – 1 for 3, 2 RBI

RP, R. Munoz – 2 IP, H, 4 K

(13-14) FCL BRAVES

W, 3-2 (F/10) vs. Twins

SP, R. Corona – 4 IP, H, 2 R, ER, 3 BB, 7 K

C, A. Zebrowski – 1 for 2, 2B, RBI

2B, F. Floyd – 1 for 2, RBI

(Bold = 2021 draftee)

Max Fried overcomes historical struggles against Washington; rehabbing Travis d’Arnaud hits walk-off homer for Gwinnett

Monday, August 9, 2021

-Clint Manry

Overall it was a pretty good day for the Braves yesterday as only the lower-level clubs in the minors lost their games (Rome and Augusta). The Braves matchup with the Nationals of course ended with a win, but boy did the Atlanta bullpen make it interesting. Meanwhile, catcher Travis d’Arnaud showed that he’s quickly getting back to game speed as he slugged a game-winning homer in Game 1 of Gwinnett’s doubleheader.

Here’s a recap of everything Braves from Sunday. I’m flying out again tomorrow and desperately need to pack, so I had to leave the minor league recap with just scores and stats…


W, 5-4 Nationals

SP, M. Fried – (W), 6 IP, 7 H, ER, BB, 5 K

LF, A. Duvall – 2 for 3, HR, 2 RBI

2B, O. Albies – 1 for 3, HR, 2 RBI

1B/3B, A. Riley – 1 for 4, 2B, RBI

A three-run sixth inning featuring an RBI double by Austin Riley and a two-run homer by Adam Duvall helped lead the Braves over the Nationals on Sunday. The Atlanta bullpen nearly spoiled this one… again… but luckily the Braves offense scored just enough to finish with more runs.

Historically, Max Fried has never really liked facing Washington, however, yesterday it didn’t seem to phase him. Following a Nationals run in the third, Fried came to bat and slapped a softly-hit single up the middle, which immediately led to this two-run homer by Ozzie Albies to give Atlanta the lead…

In the sixth, with Dansby Swanson on first after the Nationals infield made an impressive play to execute a force-out at second, third baseman Austin Riley came up big with a wall-hitting RBI double to put the Braves up 3-1. Later in that same inning, Adam Duvall absolutely destroyed a 1-0 pitch over the left field wall, adding two more runs and making it a 5-1 game…

Fried left with a four-run lead, but as usual the Braves bullpen makes this one interesting. The Nationals scored two in the seventh off Jesse Chavez, then one in the ninth off Chris Martin. With Washington threatening, placing a runner on second following an RBI double, luckily Martin was able to induce a game-ending groundout by Josh Bell to narrowly escape and preserve the win.

A loss by the Mets on Sunday puts the Braves in second-place and just 2 ½ games back from the Phillies in the division at 57-55. Atlanta was won seven of its last ten, while Philadelphia has eight wins in its last ten. Let’s take at least 2 of 3 versus the Reds this week (starting Tuesday), and then hopefully win another Nationals series next weekend!


W, 4-3 vs. Charlotte

W, 8-2 vs. Charlotte

SP, K. Wright – 4.2 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 6 K, HR

SP, J. De La Cruz – 4 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, K

SS, O. Arcia – 4 for 7, HR, 3 RBI

CF, C. Pache – 2 for 4, HR, 2B, 2 RBI

RF, T. Demeritte – 1 for 3, HR, 2 RBI

*Travis d’Arnaud hit walk-off home run in Game 1…

*Cristian Pache led off Game 2 with a home run…


W, 5-2 vs. Birmingham

SP, B. Elder – (W), 6 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, BB, 7 K, HR

2B, W. Rijo – 1 for 4, HR, 2 RBI

3B, C. Alexander – 2 for 4, 2B

C, H. Clementia – 1 for 4, HR, 2 RBI


L, 2-1 vs. Greenville

SP, A. Puckett – 5.2 IP, 4 H, ER, 2 BB, 5 K, HR

SS, L. Waddell – 1 for 3, 2B, R, BB

CF, M. Harris – 1 for 4, 2B, RBI, SB

Bold = 2021 draftee

*Reliever Emmanual Ramirez allowed go-ahead RBI double in the seventh.


L, 8-1 vs. Charleston

SP, J. Estes – (L), 4.2 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 8 K

2B, V. Grissom – 1 for 3

LF, W. Carter – 1 for 4

RF, C. Robinson – 1 for 3, R

CF, S. Paolini – 1 for 3, BB

C, T. Tolve – 0 for 4, RBI (RBI groudout)

Bold = 2021 draftee

Washington steals one from Atlanta while a few ’21 draftees pick up their first hits

Sunday, August 8, 2021

-Clint Manry

It was one of those games for the Braves last night as Atlanta dropped a game they should’ve won. We’ve seen the same situation play out many times this season, in which the bullpen fails, but Saturday night’s loss was super frustrating given how well the team has played of late.

Even so, the Braves farm system had a few bright spots. A few former 2021 draftees made some highlights by recording their first hits and RBIs.

Here’s a recap of everything that went on with the Braves organization on Saturday…

(56-55) Atlanta Braves

L, 3-2 vs. Nationals

SP, C. Morton – 6 IP, 3 H, 2 BB, 7 K

RF, J. Soler – 2 for 2, HR, RBI, 2 BB

SS, D. Swanson – 1 for 4, 2B

Veteran starter Charlie Morton pitched another strong outing, and the Braves scored two early runs to go up 2-0 on the Nationals last night. However, in the ninth against closer Will Smith, Washington manufactured three runs to steal the game. Smith led off the final frame by walking Josh Bell, then he proceeded to allow a double by Ryan Zimmerman. With runners on the corners, two batters later Luis Garcia grounded out and pushed in Bell to make it 3-1. Following a Braves mound visit,  the next batter – Riley Adams – belted a two-run homer… and just like that Atlanta was down by one.

The loss was an absolute gut punch. Adams, who’s first career homer came last night versus Smith, is sporting a 13 wRC+ this season, to go with a .111 AVG and 35.9K%. How in the hell does that guy take away the Braves win? Hopefully Atlanta can recover today with Max Fried on the mound. Fried will face Washington’s Patrick Corbin, with first pitch scheduled for 1:20 PM (ET).

(44-38) Gwinnett Stripers

PPD vs. Charlotte

The game between the Stripers and Knights was postponed on Saturday, so the two teams will play a doubleheader today, with Game 1 beginning at 12:05 PM (ET).

(47-36) Mississippi Braves

W, 1-0 vs. Birmingham

SP, V. Vodnik – 4 IP, 2 H, 4 BB, 3 K

C, S. Langeliers – 1 for 3, 2B, R

2B, J. Miller – 1 for 3, RBI

This was a pitching battle from the start as Victor Vodnik tossed a two-hitter over four innings, though struggled a bit with his control. B-Ham’s starter Taylor Varnell was also stingy on the mound as he also allowed just two hits and struck out six over six innings of work. His lone mistake came in the second when M-Braves second baseman Jalen Miller drove an RBI single to center to score Shea Langeliers and go up 1-0.

Mississippi’s bullpen was dominant in the win. The trio of Hayden Deal, Brandon White and Brooks Wilson came in and pitched five hitless innings to end the game, to go with seven strikeouts. Wilson is now down to a 1.87 ERA for the season as one the M-Braves top arms out of the bullpen.

(37-46) Rome Braves

L, 11-3 vs. Greenville

SP, C. Huntley – (L), 4 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, BB, 4 K, HR

DH, M. Harris – 2 for 4, HR, 2B, 2 RBI

CF, J. Franklin – 1 for 4, 2B, R

LF, A. Moritz – 2 for 3, 2B, RBI

Rome got beat up on last night as Greenville’s Joe Davis and Stephen Scott combined to finish 5 for 9 with two homers, a double and seven RBI. By the third inning, the R-Braves were already down 5-1, and despite the offense pushing across a run in both the fourth and fifth innings, the Drive kept scoring runs at a higher pace. On the bright side, though, start prospect and now fifth on my Midseason Braves Top 30, Michael Harris, belted his sixth home run of the season when he drove one to deep straight-away center in the first…

That’s six losses in a row for Rome. Because of so many promotions impacting the team’s pitching, the R-Braves starting rotation has become rather thin.

(34-49) Augusta GreenJackets

L, 4-2 vs. Charleston

SP, A. Hoffmann – 2 IP, 2 H, ER, BB, 2 K, HR

RF, L. Stephens – 1 for 4, 2B, RBI

1B, B. Horne – 2 for 4

3B, J. Malloy – 1 for 4, 2B, RBI

SS, V. Grissom – 1 for 5

(bold) = 2021 draftee

We had a few more debuts for some of the Braves recent 2021 draftees as 21-year-old Justyn-Henry Malloy picked up his first hit of his pro career, an RBI double in the second to put Augusta up 2-0.

Those two runs in that second inning (Landon Stephens also doubled in a run) was all the GreenJackets could muster, though, and the Knights ran away with it.

Another 2021 draftee made his first appearance, though, as 12th round pick Andew Hoffmann started Saturday’s game and worked a pair of innings. The Illinois product allowed a homer in the second but overall pitched rather well, throwing 22 of 32 pitches for a strike. I’m sure we’ll be seeing a lot more of Hoffmann as the season progresses.

(11-14) FCL Braves

W, 2-1 vs. Rays

SP, R. Salinas – 3 IP, H, R, 3 BB, 4 K

C, A. Zebrowski – 1 for 2, 2B, RBI

LF, B. Mezquita – 1 for 4, RBI

RF, E. Workinger – 1 for 4

(bold) = 2021 draftee

The baby Braves only managed three hits but those his produced two runs and a win over the Rays yesterday. This year’s 13th round pick by the Braves, 20-year-old catcher Adam Zebrowski picked up both his first hit and RBI in the win, and outfielder Brandol Mezquita continued his incredible start to the 2021 campaign by hitting safely in his fifth consecutive game.

Starter Royber Salinas was a little wild, but the FCL Braves bullpen came in and finished the job with relative ease. As part of a trio of relievers, Estarlin Rodriguez worked four scoreless innings and allowed just three hits while striking out three to earn the win.

Huascar Ynoa throws nearly 70 pitches in rehab start with Gwinnett; M-Braves rout B-ham 12-0

Saturday, August 7, 2021

­­-Clint Manry

I’m a little late today as I was working on a Dansby Swanson post for SportsTalkATL… but here’s a shortened recap of Friday’s Braves minor league action.

(44-38) Gwinnett Stripers

W, 4-3 (F/11) vs. Charlotte

SP, H. Ynoa – 3.2 IP, 4 H, 3 R, ER, 4 K HR (68 pitches / 46 strikes)

DH, W. Contreras – 1 for 3, 2B

CF, D. Waters – 0 for 4, R, BB

C, T. d’Arnaud – 1 for 2

RP, S. Newcomb – (W), 2 IP, 2 H, 4 K

*Catcher Jonathan Morales walked if off in the 11th with an RBI single, knocking in Philip Ervin.

(46-36) Mississippi Braves

W, 12-0 vs. Birmingham

SP, S. Strider – (W), 6.1 IP, 4 H, BB, 12 K

RF, T. Harris – 2 for 5, HR (GS), 5 RBI

2B, J. Miller – 2 for 5, HR, RBI

CF, J. Dean – 2 for 6, 2B, 2 RBI

C, S. Langeliers – 2 for 5, 2B, 2 RBI

3B, R. Delgado – 4 for 5, 3 R

RP, I. Diaz – IP, H, BB, 3 K

(37-45) Rome Braves

L, 4-3 vs. Greenville

SP, D. Vines – (L), 5.2 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 3 BB, 7 K, 2 HR

CF, M. Harris – 1 for 4, 2B

C, R. Estrada – 2 for 4, 2B, RBI, R

SS, B. Philip – 2 for 4, R

(34-48) Augusta GreenJackets

L, 9-4 vs. Charleston

SP, J. Johnson – 4.2 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, BB, 5 K

2B, C. Conley – 1 for 3, RBI

1B, B. Horne – 1 for 3, R

LF, L. Stephens – 1 for 4, RBI

CF, S. Paolini – 1 for 2, 2 R, 2 BB

*Charleston scored six runs combined in final three innings to overcome 4-3 deficit.

(bold) = 2021 draftee

(10-14) FCL Braves

L, 9-6 vs. Rays

SP, D. Florentino – 2 IP, BB, K

CF, T. Collins – 2 for 3, 2B, 3 RBI

C, A. Barranca – 1 for 3, HR, 2 RBI, 2 R

1B, M. Backstrom – 1 for 3, 2B, RBI, R

(bold) = 2021 draftee

Braves finally sport winning record while the farm gets swept

Friday, August 6, 2021

-Clint Manry

Usually it’s disappointing to see that every minor league team took a loss, but for Thursday night’s case… not so much. The big league team finally got over the hump and now have more wins than losses this season, a feat they just couldn’t seem to achieve during the campaign’s first 98 games. All is well… we now have a winning baseball club.

Here’s a recap of last night’s action. Today’s recap is one of them shortened ones, given I’m flying home and in the process of updating my Braves Top 30 prospect list.

(55-54) Atlanta Braves

W, 8-4 vs. Cardinals

SP, T. Toussaint – 5.1 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 3 K, HR

3B, A. Riley – 2 for 5, HR, 2 RBI

CF, J. Pederson – 1 for 3, HR, RBI

SS, D. Swanson – 2 for 4, 2 2B, R

It’s a sweep! It only took 99 games to do it, but the Braves are above .500 for the first time this season, following its win over the Cardinals last night. Touki Toussaint pitched decently but was out of the game in the sixth with the game tied at two apiece. However, once the righty left, it looked as if the Atlanta bullpen was going to once again spoil a potential win.

But the eighth inning was all Atlanta as Austin Riley started things with homer. Then St. Louis proceeded to gift the Braves with six consecutive walks (one of which was a HBP), which resulted in four more runs for Atlanta’s offense. The lead was simply too much for the Cards to overcome, and just like that, the Bravos had themselves a series sweep and a winning record. As we saw Thursday night, the pitching doesn’t have to be perfect when this Braves lineup is manufacturing runs. Singles, homers and walks… Atlanta was doing it all last night.

(43-38) Gwinnett Stripers

L, 10-6 vs. Charlotte

SP, I. Anderson – 2.1 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 2 K

C, W. Contreras – 3 for 4, RBI, R

2B, Y. Sanchez – 1 for 2, HR, 2 RBI

3B. J. Camargo – 1 for 5, 2B, RBI, R

SS, O. Arcia – 1 for 4, 2B, R

(45-36) Mississippi Braves

L, 7-2 vs. Birmingham

SP, A. Rangel – (L), 5 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, HR

SS, B. Shewmake – 3 for 4, RBI

2B, J. Miller – 2 for 5

RF, G. Jenista – 1 for 4, RBI

(37-44) Rome Braves

L, 4-0 vs. Greenville

SP, J. McSteen – (L), 6 IP, 5 H, ER, 3 BB, 8 K

*Kevin Josephina tallied Rome’s one and only hit last night

(34-47) Augusta GreenJackets

L, 9-4 vs. Charleston

SP, R. Rodriguez – 0.2 IP, 2 H, ER, 2 BB

RP, R. Munoz – (L), 2 IP, H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, HR

RF, W. Carter – 1 for 4, HR, 3 RBI

SS, V. Grissom – 3 for 4, R

1B, C. Bunnell – 1 for 3, 2B, 2 R, BB

(10-13) FCL Braves

Double header versus Pirates Gold was postponed. The two teams will make it up on August 31.

Johan Camargo homers for Gwinnett while Freddy Tarnok brings the heat in M-Braves pitcher’s duel

Thursday, August 5, 2021

-Clint Manry

Wednesday night was a great night for Braves baseball as Atlanta actually won its second game in a row. It’s a winning streak! Also, down on the farm we had several 2021 Braves draftees make their pro debuts at both High-A Rome and Single-A Augusta. Here’s a look at last night’s action…

(54-54) Atlanta Braves

W, 7-4 vs. Cardinals

SP, D. Smyly – 4 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, BB, 2 K, HR

SS, D. Swanson – 4 for 4, 3 R, SB

LF, A. Duvall – 1 for 3, HR, 2 RBI

RF, J. Soler – 1 for 5, HR, RBI

Wow. This game turned out to be quite the performance for the Braves, despite a shaky first inning that featured three runs by the Cardinals. Starter Drew Smyly had all of us worried as he allowed four-straight batters to reach base in that opening frame, including a solo-homer by Nolan Arenado.

But Smyly actually wound up pitching pretty good through the rest of his outing. In fact, the southpaw surrendered another double (from Arenado) and a single, but no more runs, over his next three innings. Not too shabby for a guy that was down 3-0 with just one out in the first.

The Braves offense waited until the fourth to strike, and it was outfielder Guillermo Heredia that came up with the RBI single to put the team within two runs.

Then, in the following inning with two outs, Jorge Soler instantly made it a one-run game when he absolutely pummeled one to straight-away center.

And then our old buddy Adam Duvall gave the Braves the lead in the sixth. Following a single by Dansby Swanson, Duvall turned on a 99-MPH fastball and drove it over the left-center wall for his first homer with the team this season.

The Cards tied it up in the seventh, but the Braves tacked on three more runs in the eighth, thanks to a sac-fly by Stephen Vogt and a double by Joc Pederson that ended up giving St. Louis fits in the outfield grass.

It was another big night for Dansby, who’s coming off a strong month of July hitting .298 with seven homers and 10 doubles. The shortstop has had several three-hit finishes this season (seven to be exact), but last night’s four-hit performance was his first of the year. If you want to read an interesting piece on Swanson, Talking Chop just put a nice one out on Wednesday.

(43-37) Gwinnett Stripers

W, 4-1 vs. Charlotte

SP, J. Rodriguez – (W), 5 IP, 2 H, 4 K

3B, J. Camargo – 1 for 4, HR, 3 RBI

C, W. Contreras – 1 for 4, 2B

Gwinnett’s three-run first inning, which included Johan Camargo’s 10th home run of the year, was really all they needed on Wednesday as the Stripers rode some solid pitching from starter Jose Rodriguez, as well as several major league relievers. The 25-year-old Rodriguez worked five scoreless frames and set down the first eight Charlotte batters he faced before allowing a single. The strong start was certainly needed as Rodriguez will head into his next outing with a 6.93 ERA for the 2021 season. The quartet of Dylan Lee, Jesse Biddle, Sean Newcomb and AJ Minter worked the final four innings, allowing just one run and striking out six.

Camargo led the way in the lineup, although all of Orlando Aricia, Cristian Pache, William Contreras, Yolmer Sanchez and Philip Ervin recorded at least one hit for the Stripers, with Ervin finishing 2 for 4 and picking up his 11th stolen base of the season.

(45-35) Mississippi Braves

L, 1-0 (F/11) vs. Birmingham

SP, F. Tarnok – 6 IP, 3 H, 4 BB, 6 K

SS, B. Shewmake – 2 for 5

DH, C. Alexander – 1 for 5, 2B

The M-Braves and Barons battled it out in a pitcher’s duel last night as Mississippi’s Freddy Tarnok and Birmingham’s Kade McClure combined for 13 strikeouts. Even after the two starters left, neither offense could manage a run… until B-ham walked it off in the bottom of the 11th with a fielder’s choice.

And though it was a disappointing night for the Mississippi offense, the defense was mighty fine. First it was Trey Harris with a snag in foul territory…

Then… it was catcher Shea Langeliers sniping folks on the base paths in the fourth…

And finally, perhaps the play of the game, shortstop Braden Shewmake showed us his inner Derek Jeter with an absolute gem of a throw while falling off balance…

The main takeaway here, though, is that despite walking four, Tarnok had all his pitches working well on Wednesday. And according to MiLB.com’s Chris Harris, the righty’s fastball was touching 97-98 at the start of his outing. That will play, folks.

(37-43) Rome Braves

L, 5-4 vs. Greenville

SP, J. Shuster – 4 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 7 K, HR

DH, S. Michel – 2 for 3, 2B, 2 RBI, SB

C, R. Estrada – 2 for 3, 2B, 2 RBI

RF, M. Harris – 1 for 4, R, BB, SB

Boy it was a rough night for reliever Justin Yeager, who, after entering the game with a 4-3 lead in the seventh, spoiled a potential win for Rome when he tossed a wild pitch in both the seventh and eighth innings. The loss was unfortunate; however, starter Jared Shuster did pitch a solid four innings, ending his start with seven strikeouts and three earned runs from four hits.

There was a bit of excitement leading up to the R-Braves game last night, stemming from the announcement of the starting lineup, which featured 2021 draftee Luke Waddell. The fifth-round pick from last month started at shortstop for Rome and batted second, although he finished the game 0 for 3. The top performer on offense was once again Shean Michel, who has gotten hot lately. Michel is still hitting under .230 for the season, however, he’s 4 for 7 over his last pair of games. Welcome to the pros, Luke Waddell!

(34-46) Augusta GreenJackets

L, 3-1 vs. Charleston

L, 4-3 (9 inn.) vs. Charleston

SP, T. Gordon – (L), 6 IP, 8 H, 3 ER, BB, 7 K

SP, J. Acuna – 3 IP, 2 K

1B, B. Horne – 2 for 7, 2 2B, RBI

RF/LF, L. Stephens – 2 for 7, RBI, R

Augusta dropped both games of its double header, but it was a good night for a few 2021 draftees to make their pro debuts. Sixth-round pick Justyn-Henry Malloy started at third base and batted seventh in the GreenJackets lineup in Game 1, followed by both Cal Conley (fourth round), Christian Robinson (15th) and Tyler Tolve (17th) who all started in Game 2. Of the lot, only Conley – who started at shortstop and led off for Augusta in the latter game – managed to record his first hit.

Tanner Gordon started Game 1 for the GreenJackets, and as usual this season, the righty pitched well. Gordon got stuck with the loss but the offense didn’t give him much help by only managing four hits overall as a team. James Acuna, who recently earned a promotion from the FCL team, pitched Game 2. Acuna only threw 35 pitches in the outing, and did pretty well too, but again, the GreenJackets offense only tallied five hits in the loss.

Gwinnett wins fourth-straight despite another middling performance from Jasseel De La Cruz

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

-Clint Manry

We’re back with another week of Braves minor league baseball, now into Week 14 of the regular season. Here’s a recap of Tuesday’s action…

(53-54) Atlanta Braves

W, 6-1 vs. Cardinals

SP, M. Fried – (W), 6 IP, 4 H, BB, 7 K

1B, F. Freeman – 3 for 4, HR, RBI

RF, J. Soler – 1 for 4, HR, 2 RBI

CF/RF – J. Pederson – 2 for 4, RBI

Atlanta jumped all over St. Louis in the opening inning with the first seven Braves of the game reaching base via walk or hit, including a home run by recently-acquired slugger Jorge Soler.

Later in the inning Dansby Swanson knocked in a run with a single, as did Joc Pederson, followed by Kevan Smith (who grounded into a double-play). By the time the dust settled in the top of the first, the Braves had given starter Max Fried a five-run cushion to work from. Freddie Freeman added another run in the second when he belted his 24th homer of 2021.

Fried did exactly what he needed to do. The only time the Cards reached base in two consecutive at-bats was in the second, when Fried walked Tyler O’Neill and then surrendered a single of the bat of Yadier Molina. Other than that, the 27-year-old lefty contained St. Louis as he tallied 98 pitches (68 strikes). The scoreless outing gives Fried a 4.05 ERA through 97.2 innings this season. The trio of Jesse Chavez, Edgar Santana and Josh Tomlin worked the final three innings of the Braves win. Tomlin allowed an RBI single by Molina in the ninth, but the hit was rather harmless given Atlanta’s lead.

(42-37) Gwinnett Stripers

W, 6-4 vs. Charlotte

SP, J. De La Cruz – 3.1 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, BB, 2 K, HR

CF, C. Pache – 2 for 5, 2B, 2 R

LF, P. Ervin – 2 for 4, 3B, RBI, R

C, W. Contreras – 2 for 4, 2 RBI, R

SS, O. Arcia – 2 for 4, RBI, R

Thanks to a sac-fly in the sixth by Yolmer Sanchez and an RBI triple by Philip Ervin in the eighth (scoring Sanchez), Gwinnett came away with its fourth-straight win last night.

Jasseel De La Cruz got the start on Tuesday and mostly struggled, however, the Stripers offense picked him up. Down 4-2 in the third, DH William Contreras did what he does best and tied the game with an RBI single.

Two innings later, with the score still locked up at four apiece, shortstop Orlando Arcia flashed the glove with an over-the-shoulder catch, in which he capped off by quickly firing to first base to complete the double-play.

Fortunatley for Gwinnett, following Cruz’s departure, a six-man bullpen came in and silenced Charlotte by working 5.2 scoreless frames and striking out five. Also notable last night was that Braves catcher Travis d’Arnaud was active for the Stripers, starting behind the plate and batting third in the lineup. d’Arnaud finished 0 for 4 with a strikeout, but it’s a great sign to see him working his way back to Atlanta.

(45-34) Mississippi Braves

W, 7-4 vs. Birmingham

SP, B. Elder – (W), 7 IP, 9 H, 4 ER, BB, 9 K, 2 HR

RF, G. Jenista – 1 for 3, HR, 3 RBI

2B/SS, W. Rijo – 3 for 5, HR, RBI

C, S. Langeliers – 2 for 5, 2B, RBI, R

The M-Braves had plenty of supporters last night in Birmingham as they won Game 1 versus the Barons, despite being out-hit 11-9. Mississippi started Bryce Elder, and despite allowing a homer in the first and an RBI double in the second, the righty managed to settle into his outing and end the night with nine strikeouts in seven innings – the fifth consecutive start in which he’s lasted exactly seven frames.

Wendell Rijo started the scoring for Mississippi with a solo-homer in the second, giving him 11 for the 2021 season.

An inning later, catcher Shea Langeliers tied the game again with an RBI double, and then Greyson Jenista gave the M-Braves the lead when he belted a three-run homer.

Birmingham couldn’t overcome the deficit, and Mississippi’s bullpen did a nice job of preserving the victory. The duo of Indigo Diaz and Brooks Wilson worked the final two frames in scoreless fashion and combined to strikeout six.

(37-42) Rome Braves

L, 5-1 vs. Greenville

SP, A. Puckett – (L), 5 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 K

RF, S. Michel – 2 for 4, 2B

3B, K. Josephina – 1 for 4, RBI

Rome couldn’t figure out Greenville starter Brandon Walter on Tuesday night as the former 26th-round pick tossed six innings of five-hit ball, allowing just one run and striking out eight. Shean Michel’s double was the only XBH of the evening for the R-Braves and five different batters in the lineup tallied multiple strikeouts.

Righty A.J. Puckett found himself making another start at the High-A level. Puckett has been up and down between Rome and Mississippi this season, though he has performed similarly at both stops. Last night he gave up a pair of runs to the Drive, but other than surrendering a couple of doubles he pitched fairly well. Puckett sports a 3.38 ERA in 29.1 innings this season with Rome, compared to a 3.15 ERA in 34.1 frames with the M-Braves.  

(34-44) Augusta GreenJackets

PPD vs. Charleston

Augusta’s series opener with Charleston was rained out on Tuesday. The two teams will instead play a doubleheader on Wednesday.

(10-13) FCL Braves

PPD vs. Pirates Gold

As has often been the case for the baby Braves, its doubleheader versus the Pirates Gold team was postponed. Following a scheduled off day today, the two teams will try again on Thursday, with Game 1 slated to start at 10 AM (EST).

Kyle Wright strikes out 11 in Gwinnett’s win while Landon Stephens homers twice for Augusta

Monday, August 2, 2021

-Clint Manry

As has been the case all season, the Braves failed to win two in a row as they dropped its game versus the Brewers on Sunday, despite a nice outing by starting pitcher Charlie Morton. Think about this: yesterday was the eighth consecutive loss that immediately followed a win as Atlanta has been going back and forth in the win and loss column since July 17 and 18. So frustrating…

As usual, I’m traveling at the moment, currently in Indianapolis for work, so today’s recap is shortened a bit. I have blurbs for the games I was able to pay attention to on Sunday, with the rest featuring just scores and stats.

(52-54) Atlanta Braves

L, 2-1 vs. Brewers

  • SP, C. Morton – (L), 6 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 6 K, HR
  • CF, G. Heredia – 1 for 4, 2B
    3B, A. Riley – 2 for 4, RBI

(41-37) Gwinnett Stripers

W, 4-2 vs. Memphis

  • SP, K. Wright – 6 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 11 K, HR
  • 3B, J. Camargo – 3 for 5, 3B, 3 RBI
  • RF, P. Ervin – 1 for 2, RBI

After a rough month of June, Kyle Wright has had himself a solid July and Sunday was another strong start. The 25-year-old allowed a triple in the first and a solo-homer in the fourth, but other than that he was nearly unhittable as he ended up striking out 11 for the day. That’s three-straight outings in which Wright has lasted at least six innings, and he now has 21 punch outs in his last 20 frames.

This triple by Johan Camargo gave Gwinnett a 2-0 lead in the first, and later on in the ninth he added another RBI when he singled, giving him three hits in the win. Why Camargo continues to just absolute rake in the minors but constantly struggle in the majors just makes no sense. WHY CAN’T HE BE A GOOD BIG LEAGUER?!

Cristian Pache and Drew Waters each tallied a hit and walked once. I think it’s safe to say that both will probably spend the rest of 2021 in Triple-A where they can continue to improve their approach at the plate. I think we all went got a little too excited about each of them making big league contributions in 2021.

(44-34) Mississippi Braves

L, 11-3 vs. Pensacola

  • SP, V. Vodnik – (L), 1.1 IP, 6 H, 7 ER, 2 BB, K, 2 HR
  • CF, J. Dean – 2 for 4, HR, RBI
  • LF, J. Ramos – 2 for 4, 3B

(37-41) Rome Braves

L, 14-6 vs. Asheville

  • SP, H. Ynoa – (L), 2 IP, 8 H, 6 ER, BB, 2 K
  • 3B, B. Philip – 1 for 3, HR, 3 RBI
  • LF, M. Harris – 1 for 4, 2B, RBI

Huascar Ynoa’s rehab start was pretty rough as Asheville touched him up for six runs, five of which came in the opening inning. I didn’t actually watch his outing so I have no idea if this was a case where Ynoa was simply working on something, but eight hits allowed in a High-A start is never a good thing. Reports indicated that Ynoa’s velo was 96-98 MPH.

Rome might’ve gotten routed but at least Beau Philip is warming up at the plate. The former second-round pick has struggled as a pro, but on Sunday he hit his second homer in three days to put the R-Braves within three. Prospect Michael Harris also contributed with a double.

(34-44) Augusta GreenJackets

W, 8-6 vs. Myrtle Beach

  • SP, J. Estes – 6 IP, 4 H, 2 BB, 9 K
  • RF, L. Stephens – 3 for 4, 2 HR, 3 RBI
  • CF, S. Paolini – 2 for 4, 2B, 2 RBI

Dansby goes crazy in win over Brewers; Sean Kazmar makes history down on the farm

Sunday, August 1, 2021

­-Clint Manry

We were able to see two of the Braves newest major league additions in its win over the Brewers last night. Also, there was some history made down on the farm. This morning I’ve got you covered on everything that happened within the Braves organization last night.

Here’s a recap of Saturday’s minor league action, with Atlanta’s game also included…

(52-53) Atlanta Braves

W, 8-1 vs. Brewers

  • SP, K. Muller – 5 IP, 4 H, ER, 2 BB, 7 K
  • SS, D. Swanson – 3 for 4, 2 HR, 7 RBI
  • RF, J. Soler – 3 for 4, RBI, R
  • 2B, O. Albies – 2 for 5, 2B, R
  • CF/RF, J. Pederson – 1 for 4, 2B

Last night the Braves showed just how deep its offense can be as the lineup tallied a whopping eight runs from 13 hits in its win over the Brewers. Shortstop Dansby Swanson knocked in a career-high seven RBI, including two home runs for the fifth multi-homer game of his career.

Here’s the two-run dinger in the sixth…

Then the grand slam the very next inning to put Atlanta way out in front…

Also impressive was newly-acquired outfielder Jorge Soler, who finished his first game as a Brave with three hits. Sure, Soler hasn’t been himself in 2021, but as of late he’s scorching-hot. The 29-year-old is 11 for 34 (.324 AVG) during his last 10 games, which includes six homers. Manager Brian Snitker would be smart to keep Soler in the lineup and ride the hot hand.

Kyle Muller made his sixth major league start on Saturday night and was sharp, striking out seven across five innings and allowing just one run from four hits. The 23-year-old lefty has been a absolute boon for the Braves this season, and he currently sports a solid 2.43 ERA in 29.2 big league innings. Opponents are only hitting .184 versus Muller in 2021.

(40-37) Gwinnett Stripers

W, 2-1 vs. Memphis

  • SP, C. Johnstone – 2 IP, H, K
  • 1B, T. Snider – 1 for 4, 2B, 2 RBI
  • LF, D. Waters – 1 for 4, SB

It was a historic night for Gwinnett on Saturday as minor league veteran Sean Kazmar Jr. set the Braves Triple-A all-time record for career hits with a line-drive single in the second inning of the team’s win over Memphis.

That hit was Kazmar’s only knock of the game, but he’ll enter Sunday with 658 career hits as a member of the Braves Triple-A club, a team he has helped lead for going on eight seasons now. The 36-year-old infielder has played in 724 games with Gwinnett as part of a stint that dates back to the 2013 season.

Although it wasn’t just Kazmar that provided offense in this one, shortstop Yolmer Sanchez led the Stripers last night with two hits and first baseman Travis Snider paced the team with a pair of RBI to go with a double.

Gwinnett went with a bullpen game, starting Conner Johnstone before deploying a five-man bullpen. The Stripers held the Redbirds to just three hits altogether.

(44-33) Mississippi Braves

L, 5-0 vs. Pensacola

W, 8-1 vs. Pensacola

  • SP, S. Strider – (L), 5 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, BB, 9 K, 2 HR
  • SP, H. Deal – 4 IP, 3 H, ER, BB, 3 K
  • 1B, D. Lugbauer – 2 for 5, HR, 2 RBI
  • RF/DH, T. Harris – 2 for 5, 2 HR, 2 RBI
  • RF, G. Jenista – 1 for 2, HR, RBI, 2 BB

The M-Braves split its double header against Pensacola on Saturday as the offense couldn’t figure out the Blue Wahoos pitching in Game 1, only tallying three hits overall. Mississippi’s Spencer Strider tried his best to match the opposition’s stinginess on the mound, but Strider’s two runs allowed in the opening frame came back to haunt him and he took the loss despite striking out nine batters. The 22-year-old Strider has continued to punch out opposing batters while in Double-A, but his run prevention has taken quite a hit since moving up from High-A. In 28 innings with the M-Braves, the righty owns a 6.75 ERA, compared to a 2.45 ERA in 14.2 frames with Rome.

Game 2 yesterday featured a more normal M-Braves offense as the lineup produced five homers in the win. All but two batters in the Mississippi lineup finished with at least one hit and outfielder Trey Harris ended his night with his first multi-homer game of the season. Catcher Shea Langeliers was given Game 2 off.

(37-40) Rome Braves

W, 3-0 vs. Asheville

  • SP, D. Vines – (W), 7 IP, 2 BB, 9 K
  • CF, M. Harris – 1 for 4, 3B, R
  • 1B, K. Josephina – 1 for 4, 2B, R
  • 3B, B. Philip – 1 for 4, 2B, R

Rome nearly no-hit Asheville last night as the trio of Darius Vines, Trey Riley and Justin Yeager held the Tourists to only one hit in nine innings while striking out 10 and walking three. For the 23-year-old Vines, that’s two-straight strikeout-filled starts, giving him 17 punch outs in his last 12.1 innings.

There were no homers in this one, but prospect Michael Harris II came inches away from his first long ball at State Mutual Stadium when he belted a triple in the third.

In the fourth, Andrew Moritz extended his hitting streak to 16 consecutive games when he singled in a run to give Rome a 3-0 lead. And then in the sixth, Beau Philip added another XBH by slapping a one-out double.

(33-44) Augusta GreenJackets

L, 6-5 vs. Myrtle Beach

  • SP, C. Bryant – (L), 2.1 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 5 K
  • 1B, L. Stephens – 1 for 4, HR, 3 RBI
  • 2B, V. Grissom – 2 for 3, HR, RBI
  • DH, B. Horne – 1 for 4, RBI, R, SB

Despite nearly coming back in the ninth that featured four runs by the Augusta offense, the GreenJackets couldn’t recover from a 6-1 deficit on Saturday. However, prospect Vaughn Grissom had himself a nice game by finishing 2 for 3 and belting his fifth homer of the season. Grissom is currently leading the offense with a .308 AVG and .866 OPS.

Chad Bryant got the start for the GreenJackets but needed a whopping 64 pitches to get through 2.1 innings, although he did manage to strike out five. Bryant has struggled this season, shown by his 7.17 ERA so far. A three-man bullpen finished the game for Augusta, but Myrtle Beach’s three runs against reliver Benjamin Dum put the Pelicans out of reach for good.

(9-12) FCL Braves

L, 10-5 vs. Rays

  • SP, R. Salinas – (L), 2.2 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 2 HR
  • DH, J. Fernando – 1 for 4, 2 RBI
  • LF, C. Reyes – 1 for 3, HR, RBI
  • SS, C. Paraguate – 2 for 4, 2B, RBI