G-Braves Hitters Becoming Offensive

Photo courtesy of Karl Moore

The Gwinnett Braves pitching has unquestionably carried the team for the most part of this season. However, as we sit here on May 12 and look at the first place G-Braves surrounding peripherals, you can clearly see the offense is beginning to not only pick up the slack, but they are starting to win games by themselves.

In the last three games over the past two days, Gwinnett has won two of the three contests with walk-off hits in their final at-bats of the game. Stefan Gartrell blasted a walk-off homer in the 12th inning versus Buffalo on Thursday. Luis Durango followed Gartrell’s heroics with a walk-off game-winning single the very next game against Toledo in the first game of a doubleheader.

Currently the G-Braves offense has five hitters batting over .300 in their last 10 games, and Ernesto Mejia is just under that trend with a .281 batting average over his last 32 at-bats. The Gwinnett first baseman has registered nine hits, four runs scored, a home run and six RBI in just over a weeks worth of work.

Photo courtesy of Leslie Watts

Christian Marrero will shoulder a bulk of the load after the injury to Jordan Parraz and has filled in admirably as of late. The lefty first baseman/outfielder is batting .400 in his last 10 games which includes six hits in 15 at-bats alongside three runs scored, one long-ball and four RBI.

Photo courtesy of Kyle Hess

The part-time leadoff man/second hitter Jose Constanza has been on fire all year since his demotion from the Atlanta Braves. For the 2012 season, Constanza is leading the team in batting average (.340), runs scored (18), triples (3), on-base percentage (.420), slugging percentage (.437) and OPS (.857). In his last 10 games, the left fielder is tearing the cover off the ball at a .382 clip including 13 hits and nine runs scored.

Photo courtesy of Karl Moore

The reigning IL Batter of the Week Stefan Gartrell has been on a tear of late, batting .353 in his last 10 games. The G-Braves slugger has recorded six runs scored, 12 hits, four home runs and 10 RBI as he headlines the latest offensive surge.

Photo courtesy of Kyle Hess

Luis Durango has been excelling from the top-spot in the G-Braves starting line-up. For the season, the speedster is leading the IL in stolen bases with 18 in 20 attempts. He is leading Gwinnett in at-bats (131) and hits (36) alongside batting .303 in his last 10 games. Durango has 10 hits, six RBI and four runs scored in his previous 33 at-bats including a .412 batting average over his last five games. Durango and Constanza are truly the catalysts of the G-Brave offensive attack in 2012.

Photo courtesy of Kyle Hess

Last but certainly not least is second baseman Drew Sutton who is hitting .300 over his last 30 at-bats. The switch hitter has collected nine hits and three runs scored over that span alongside some sparkling defense.

Photo courtesy of Leslie Watts

The G-Braves possess the second best record in the IL (22-13) this season and look to build upon their glistening mark over the next few months. With both the offense and defense running on all cylinders, this certainly is a team to be reckon with all season. Right now, the Pawtucket Red Sox (23-13) own the best record in the league by one game over Gwinnett. The G-Braves will meet up with the Boston Red Sox Triple-A affiliate for the first time this season from June 9 through June 12 at Pawtucket.

By: Tony Piraro

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