Results tagged ‘ Charlotte Knights ’

Series Preview: Gwinnett Braves (19-25) vs. Lehigh Valley IronPigs (18-27)

Pitching probables

Mon: RHP Matt Wisler (2-3, 4.40 ERA) vs. LHP Anthony Vasquez (1-0, 1.69 ERA), 6:35 p.m.

Tues: RHP Chien-Ming Wang (1-4, 4.70 ERA) vs. LHP Joely Rodriguez (2-3, 5.18 ERA), 6:35 p.m.

Wed: RHP Sugar Ray Marimon (2-2, 4.05 ERA) vs. RHP Jason Berken (3-2, 4.29 ERA), 6:35 p.m.

Thurs: LHP Manny Banuelos (3-0, 2.64 ERA) vs. RHP Phillippe Aumont (2-1, 1.64 ERA), 6:35 p.m.

Matt Wisler (Karl Moore)

Matt Wisler (Karl Moore)

The Gwinnett Braves return to Coolray Field for a seven-game homestand that begins with four games against the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies. Gwinnett went 3-4 on its most recent road trip that included series against the Toledo Mud Hens and Columbus Clippers. The Mud Hens took two of three games for the G-Braves, while Gwinnett and Columbus split their four-game series.

Lehigh Valley enters the series vs. Gwinnett on its best roll of the season. A 7-5 home loss Sunday to the Charlotte Knights ended a season-high, six-game winning streak that lifted the IronPigs out of the basement in the International League North Division. They now sit fifth in the six-team division ahead of the Syracuse Chiefs (17-26). The G-Braves remain in the cellar of the IL South, 5.5 games behind division leading Charlotte (24-19).

Pitching: G-Braves’ pitchers have combined for the sixth-lowest ERA on the season with a 3.22 mark and has held opponents to two runs or fewer in each of the team’s last 12 wins. However, the G-Braves have also lost their last 14 games when they give up more than two runs. The club’s eight saves are tied for the second-fewest in the league with Syracuse and one ahead of Toledo, while its 19 home runs allowed are tied for the fourth-fewest. Gwinnett pitchers have walked the third-most batters of any IL team with 159, but their 10 combined wild pitches are the fewest in the league. The G-Braves are also one of six teams with at least 330 strikeouts (331) and sit six strikeouts behind the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, which hold the lead in that department. Individually, Banuelos has risen to ninth among qualified pitchers with a 2.64 ERA (14 ER in 47.2 IP), and he is one of three qualifying pitchers who has yet to suffer a defeat.

The IronPigs’ staff held opponents to one run in four games during the recent winning streak to lower the team ERA to 3.90, which ranks 10th in the 14-team league. Lehigh Valley had limited its opponents to one run twice before that stretch and is the only team in the league yet to record a shutout victory, and it has issued the most walks with 192 (4.26 per game), 32 more than second-place Toledo in that category. The IronPigs’ 286 strikeouts are the second-fewest in the league, five more than Syracuse. Aumont’s 1.64 ERA (8 ER in 44.0 IP) through 10 outings (six starts) is the second-lowest in the league among qualified pitchers, although his 24 walks are tied for the second-most in the league.

Hitting: The G-Braves and IronPigs have identical .259 team batting averages, and they are the two most power deprived squads in the league. Gwinnett’s 13 long balls for the season are one fewer than the 14 homers Lehigh Valley has launched. The G-Braves have scored nine more runs (178) than the IronPigs and stolen 21 more bases (Gwinnett has a league-leading 53). The G-Braves’ 231 strikeouts are the fewest in the league, while Lehigh Valley’s 296 are the fifth fewest.

Gwinnett outfielder Eury Perez continues to lead the league in stolen bases with 22, while second baseman Jose Peraza remains with 14 (tied for fourth). Peraza has yet to steal a base since his return to the lineup Thursday after missing a week, although he did hit his first two home runs of the season at Columbus. Perez also leads the league with 27 runs scored, while infielder Adonis Garcia is fourth in batting average at .338 and outfielder Cedric Hunter is tied for second in doubles with 13.

G-Bites: The G-Braves received a new pitcher in their starting rotation during the road trip. Right-hander Cody Martin (0-1, 2.08 ERA), who won the team’s Most Outstanding Pitcher award after going 7-8 with a 3.52 ERA in 2014, joined the club May 19 from the Atlanta Braves. He went 2-2 with a 4.12 ERA (9 ER in 19.2 IP) in 17 relief appearances to begin the year with Atlanta…The Braves traded right-handed reliever John Cornely (2-2, 4.42 ERA, 1 save, 12 appearances) to the Boston Red Sox on May 20, and he was assigned to Triple-A Pawtucket…Garcia returned to the G-Braves on May 22 after a four-day stay with Atlanta in his first Major League experience (0-1, 1 BB, 2 games), while left-handed reliever Ian Thomas got called up to Atlanta for the second time this season…The G-Braves will close their homestand with three games Friday through Sunday vs. Columbus, the Triple-A affiliate of the Cleveland Indians.

-JM

Series Preview: Gwinnett Braves (16-18) vs. Louisville Bats (14-20)

Pitching probables

Fri: RHP Matt Wisler (2-3, 4.59 ERA) vs. RHP Jon Moscot (5-0, 2.35 ERA), 7:05 p.m.

Sat: RHP Chien-Ming Wang (0-4, 5.70 ERA) vs. RHP Dylan Axelrod (1-3, 3.57 ERA), 7:05 p.m.

Sun: RHP Sugar Ray Marimon (2-1, 1.96 ERA) vs. RHP Donovan Hand (0-1, 3.06 ERA), 2:05 p.m.

The Gwinnett Braves complete their seven-game homestand with three contests vs. the Louisville Bats, the Triple-A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds. The G-Braves dropped three of four games to the Syracuse Chiefs at Coolray Field earlier in the week, although none of the four games were decided by more than three runs. Louisville comes to Gwinnett after losing three of four road games to the Charlotte Knights.

The Bats are 4-7 in their last 11 games dating back to May 3 and are in third place in the four-team International League West Division, 5.5 games behind the division-leading Indianapolis Indians. The G-Braves remain in the cellar of the IL South despite a 3.5-game deficit to co-division leaders Charlotte and the Durham Bulls.

Pitching: Louisville enters the series with the second-highest team earned-run average in the league at 4.41, which is better than only the Toledo Mud Hens’ 4.87 mark. Bats pitchers have given up four or more runs in five of their last six games, and their 224 combined strikeouts are tied for the second-fewest in the league. Moscot, who will start the series opener, leads the league with five wins, and his 2.35 ERA is the seventh-lowest among qualifying pitchers, although he also leads the league with six wild pitches.

The Gwinnett pitching staff has held opponents in six of their last eight games, although the team is 4-4 in those contests. The G-Braves’ team ERA of 3.01 is the fourth-lowest in the league, and their nine home runs allowed are the fewest in the league, two behind the 11 given up by Buffalo Bisons pitchers. Wisler, the reigning IL Pitcher of the Week, will take the mound for Gwinnett in game one after going 2-0 with a 1.35 ERA (2 ER in 13.1 IP), one walk and nine strikeouts in his latest two starts.

Hitting: The G-Braves’ team batting average dropped five points to .264 during their four-game series against Syracuse, but that still ranks as the third-highest in the league. Mycal Jones launched the team’s lone home run of the series. The club sits at the bottom of the league in that department with seven for the year, two behind Buffalo.

Louisville has slugged more than twice as many home runs with 15 through their first 34 games, but the G-Braves have scored more runs than the Bats (136 to 123). Louisville’s .248 team batting average is the fourth-lowest among the IL’s 16 teams. Their 257 combined strikeouts are the sixth-most in the league, while the G-Braves’ 179 are the fewest in the league, 31 fewer than second-place Buffalo in that category.

G-Bites: Infielder Sean Kazmar returned from the disabled list Thursday after the Braves called up outfielder Todd Cunningham. Kazmar entered the Thursday’s game as a pinch runner in the ninth inning…Gwinnett leads the IL with 43 stolen bases, six more than second-place Durham, and have the top two individual base stealers in the league with Eury Perez (18) and  Jose Peraza (14), who also leads the league with eight sacrifice hits…Infielder Adonis Garcia’s .347 batting average ranks third in the league among qualifying hitters…Left-handed reliever Donnie Veal is tied for the league lead in holds with five.

Gwinnett will head out Monday on a seven-game road trip that includes three games against Toledo and four against the Columbus Clippers.

-JM

Series Preview: Gwinnett Braves (3-3) vs. Charlotte Knights (3-3)

Pitching probables

Wed: LHP Manny Banuelos (0-0, 2.45 ERA) vs. RHP Chris Beck (0-0, 5.79 ERA)

Thurs: RHP Williams Perez (0-0, 2.25 ERA) vs. LHP Carlos Rodon (1-0, 1.80 ERA)

Manny Banuelos (Chris Roughgarden)

Manny Banuelos (Chris Roughgarden)

The Gwinnett Braves finish their season-opening, eight-game homestand with two games against the International League South Division rival Charlotte Knights, the Triple-A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox. Charlotte and Gwinnett have both alternated victories through their first six games and are part of a division-wide tie for first place at 3-3 with the Durham Bulls and Norfolk Tides. The two-game set features 6:35 p.m. contests Wednesday and Thursday at Coolray Field. Both teams will then travel Friday to Charlotte to begin a three-game series at BB&T Ballpark.

Pitching: With two pitchers who were ranked in the top 30 in the Atlanta Braves’ system in the 2015 Baseball America Prospect Handbook, Gwinnett will look to continue its early success on the mound. None of the G-Braves’ five starting pitchers has allowed more than two runs in a start through the season’s first six games. The rotation has posted a 2.03 ERA with a combined 30 strikeouts and 16 walks in 26.2 innings but has yet to garner a win, as RHP Chien-Ming Wang is the only starter to last past 5.0 innings. The Gwinnett bullpen, meanwhile, has an equally impressive 2.23 ERA with 29 strikeouts and 14 walks in 32.1 innings. Overall, the G-Braves’ pitching staff is ranked third in the International League with a 2.14 ERA and 58 strikeouts.

Charlotte comes to Gwinnett in the cellar of the International League pitching rankings. The Knights have allowed seven or more runs in each of their three losses and carry an IL-worst 5.17 ERA and seven home runs allowed, three more than any other team. Wednesday’s starter Chris Beck received a no-decision in his first start of the year Friday vs. Norfolk (4.2 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO). Thursday starter Carlos Rodon provided the Knights’ most impressive start of the early season the following day with nine strikeouts (2 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2BB) in 5.0 innings during a 4-2 win over the Tides.

BattingWhile Gwinnett holds a significant statistical advantage in the pitching department, the opposite is true offensively. The G-Braves’ .224 batting average ranks 11th in the 14-team IL and they are one of two teams (Buffalo)  that have yet to hit a home run. Infielder Pedro Ciriaco leads the team with seven hits and four RBIs with a double. Two of the G-Braves’ wins have also come on Ciriaco’s game-winning hits. He singled home the winning run Friday in the 11th inning to beat Durham 5-4 and bounced a grounder off of first base in the 10th inning Monday to score two runs and give Gwinnett a 5-4 victory over Norfolk.

Charlotte leads the league with a .296 team batting average and a .427 slugging percentage that includes five triples. Outfielder Trayce Thompson is second in the league with a .429 batting average and has three runs scored to go with three RBIs. Infielder Tyler Saladino also leads the league with five stolen bases, while outfielder Engel Beltre is tied for the league lead in runs scored with six.

G-Bites: The Atlanta Braves called up right-hander Sugar Ray Marimon from Gwinnett on Monday, and he made his Major League debut the following day. He entered Tuesday’s game against the Miami Marlins with one out in the third inning and the bases loaded. He struck out the first batter he faced, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, and got Adeiny Hechavarria to ground out to escape the jam. Marimon pitched a total of 4.0 innings (4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 SO) after opening the season on the G-Braves roster. He made one appearance with Gwinnett, throwing 3.0 hitless innings with two strikeouts against Durham on Opening Night, Thursday, April 9 … Left-handed reliever Ian Thomas joined Gwinnett from Double-A Mississippi to replace Marimon on the Triple-A roster. Thomas pitched 2.1 innings with nothing more than one hit allowed Tuesday vs. Norfolk.

-JM

Series Preview: Gwinnett Braves (45-61) vs. Charlotte Knights (48-58)

Hale (Makensie Cooper)

Hale (Makensie Cooper)

Fri, July 26: RHP David Hale (4-5, 3.03) vs. RHP Zach Stewart (5-10, 4.91)
Sat, July 27: RHP Omar Poveda (5-6, 3.30) vs. LHP Charlie Leesman (2-1, 3.62)
Sun, July 28: RHP Joe Bisenius (3-3, 5.83) vs. TBA
Mon, July 29: TBA vs. RHP Jason Berken (8-9, 3.85)

Gwinnett dropped their last two at Durham, losing the road-home series three games to one. Charlotte is on a roll of late, winning their last three games and taking sole possession of third place in the South Division.

Batters: Since rejoining the G-Braves, Tyler Pastornicky has hit in four straight games. In his last four games, he is hitting .462 (6-for-13) with one run scored and two RBI. On the season, he is batting .317 (78-for-246) with 13 doubles, two triples, four homers and 27 RBI for Gwinnett… Todd Cunningham returned from a minor hip flexor strain on fire. In three games, he is hitting .455 (5-for-11) with a double and three runs scored. He has been a sparkplug, taking over the leadoff spot since returning to the lineup. In 20 games as the leadoff hitter, he is batting .280 (21-for-75) with two doubles, one triple and two RBI.

Pitchers: David Hale will get the ball in the opener. In his last seven starts, he is 3-2 with a 1.12 ERA (5 ER/40.1 IP) and a 1.16 WHIP. Hale won his first career Triple-A contest against the Charlotte Knights on 4/6, tossing five innings of two-run ball. Omar Poveda continues to have solid starts for the G-Braves. In his last contest, he went six innings, allowing seven hits and two runs in a 2-1 loss to Indianapolis. Poveda leads the squad with 13 quality starts.

Charlotte Knights
Batters: Charlotte has had a rough time against the G-Braves, posting a .251 (98-for-390) batting average, while striking out 105 times… Steve Tolleson leads the team in hitting, batting .292 (83-for-284) with six homers and 43 RBI. However, the infielder has struggled against the G-Braves, posting a .238 (10-for-42) batting average… Mike McDade fared well against the Braves in their two game series three weeks ago. In two games, he went 3-for-7 with two walks. On the season, he is hitting .257 (82-for-319) with eight homers and 42 RBI.

Pitchers: Zach Stewart is having a tough season. Originally the opening day starter for the Knights, the right-handed hurler has posted a 5-10 record with a 4.91 ERA. The long ball has been one of his problems, as he has issued 13 in 20 starts… Charlie Leesman suffered a huge setback last season, tearing his ACL in an International League playoff game; however, he has come back strong in 2013. In 11 starts for the Knights, he is 2-1 with 3.62 ERA. He has struck out 54 in 59.2 innings, while walking 25 batters. Last season he was 12-10 with a 2.45 ERA.

Knight Tales: Charlotte enters play 7.5 games back of the Wild card spot. They will need a big weekend against the G-Braves, as they have lost eight of 12 against Gwinnett.

Cory Gearrin Optioned to Gwinnett

Ayala (Roughgarden)

Ayala (Roughgarden)

The Atlanta Braves have optioned right-handed reliever Cory Gearrin to Triple-A Gwinnett, effective Friday, July 5. Right-hander Luis Ayala will take his place on the 25-man Major League roster as he has completed his rehab stint with Gwinnett. To make room for Gearrin on the G-Braves’ roster, the Braves have announced that left-hander Cole McCurry has been released.

The 27-year old Gearrin had been with the Atlanta Braves the entire season prior to being optioned to Gwinnett on Friday. In 37 appearances with the Braves, the right-hander was 2-1 with a 3.77 ERA (13 ER in 31.0 IP). He recorded his first career Major League save on May 20 vs. Minnesota. Despite strong outings early in the year, Gearrin had appeared in just seven games since the end of May, going 0-0 with a 12.00 ERA (8 ER in 6.0 IP) in that span.

The Chattanooga, TN native will return to Gwinnett for his fourth career stint with the club. From 2010 through 2012, Gearrin was one of the top workhorses out of the G-Braves’ bullpen. He appeared in 126 games, posting a 10-9 record with a 2.63 ERA (54 ER in 185.0 IP) and 13 saves in 16 chances. Gearrin was named to the 2012 Triple-A All-Star Game after going 3-1 with a 1.25 ERA and seven saves in 28 games prior to the break. Following the season, he was named Gwinnett’s Pitcher of the Year by the Atlanta Braves.

Gearrin is in his seventh professional season with the Atlanta Braves organization. He was originally drafted in the fourth round of the 2007 First Year Player Draft out Mercer University (Macon, GA).

Replacing Gearrin on Atlanta’s 25-man roster will be Ayala, who will return to the Major Leagues for the second time this year. The right-hander had been on the Braves’ disabled list since April 30 with anxiety disorder and had made 11 minor league rehab appearances between Double-A Mississippi and Triple-A Gwinnett. With Gwinnett, he went 0-1 with a 6.48 ERA (6 ER in 8.1 IP) in eight outings. Before being placed on the disabled list, Ayala was 0-1 with a 3.86 ERA in five games with Atlanta.

McCurry went 1-1 with a 5.73 ERA (21 ER in 33.0 IP) and two saves in 20 relief appearances with Gwinnett this season. He also pitched with Double-A Mississippi, going 0-0 with a 3.38 ERA (3 ER in 8.0 IP) in four games, one start.

The Gwinnett Braves return to action on Friday night at 7:05 PM against the Charlotte Knights. Right-hander

Cody Martin (2-0, 1.29) will start for the G-Braves, while right-hander Jason Berken (6-8, 3.95) will counter for the Knights.

Series Preview: Gwinnett Braves (37-50) vs. Charlotte Knights (38-49)

Thu: RHP Omar Poveda (5-5, 3.42) vs LHP Charlie Leesman (1-1, 3.55)

Fri: RHP Cody Martin (2-0, 1.29) vs. RHP Jason Berken (6-8, 3.95)

Martin (Moore)

Martin (Moore)

The Gwinnett Braves finished their mini-road trip, dropping three of four to the Norfolk Tides (46-40). With the losses, the Braves have fallen 9.5 back in the Wild Card standings and to fourth place in the South division.

Batters- The recent promotion of Joey Terdoslavich (.318/18 HR/ 58 RBI) leaves a big void in the middle of the lineup. .. Ernesto Mejia will carry the load. The first baseman was recently named to his second consecutive Triple-A All Star game. On the season, he is hitting .249 (73-for-293) with 21 homers and 62 RBI. He leads the squad in both categories, while coming in second in the International League in both home runs and RBI… Brandon Boggs has cooled off of late, but the switch hitter has been solid since joining the G-Braves. In 47 games, he is batting .277 (43-for-155) with five dingers and 17 RBI.

Pitchers- The Braves will throw two of their best this weekend against the Knights. In game one, Omar Poveda will take the ball looking for his team-leading sixth win of the season. The right hander is 5-5 with a 3.42 ERA in 16 starts for the G-Braves… Cody Martin will take the ball in game two for the Braves. Since being called up from Double-A Mississippi three weeks ago, the righty is 2-0 with a 1.29 ERA, delivering three quality starts for Gwinnett.

Charlotte Knights

The Knights have rebounded from a poor 7-21 start and are now third in the South Division and only 8.5 games back of the Wild Card leading Tides. However, they have not fared well against the Braves, posting a 2-8 mark against Gwinnett.

Batters- Recently named Triple-A All-Star Josh Phegley leads the Knight attack. The backstop is hitting .316 (73-for-231) with 18 doubles, 15 homers and 41 RBI. He has been just as good against the Braves in 2013, hitting .345 (10-for-29) with two doubles, two homers and three RBI in eight games… Blake Tekotte is swinging a hot bat of late. In his last 10 games, he is batting .389 (14-for-36) with one homer and seven RBI.

Pitchers- Charlie Leesman would have been a late September call up last season, but a knee injury in the IL Playoffs sidelined the southpaw. He missed part of this season, but has been great since returning. In seven starts, he is 1-1 with a 3.55 ERA. He features four quality pitches, relying on his fastball and changeup… Game two starter Jason Berken will try to reverse his luck against the G-Braves. In his lone start against Gwinnett, he was roughed up for six runs on ten hits in 4.1 innings. On the season, he is 6-8 with a 3.95 ERA in 16 starts for the Knights.

-Jd-

The G-Braves Minute

The Gwinnett Braves (8-10) failed to make it three in a row, dropping game three of the four-game set to the Charlotte Knights, 4-3 on Sunday afternoon in front of 6,676 at Coolray Field. The largest crowd of the 2013 season came out to see first baseman Freddie Freeman, as he took the field
in his final rehab start for the Gwinnett Braves.

Freeman went 0-for-2 with an HBP before leaving in the seventh to get on a plane and head to Denver, CO to meet the rest of his Atlanta teammates.

The G-Braves ended their current two-game winning streak, as Dusty Hughes (0-2) gave up the game-winner in the seventh inning. After giving up a single and retiring the next hitter, Hughes gave up two walks and HBP to allow a run to cross the plate, making it 5-4 Knights.

Offensively, the Braves could not get going against the Knights bullpen, as they threw five innings of shutout baseball. Deunte Heath (1-0) picked up the victory, while Ramon Troncoso recorded the save.

League Leaders: Tyler Pastornicky leads the league in hits (26)… Joe Terdoslavich leads the league in doubles (11), at bats (74) and total bases (46)… Ernesto Mejia rounds up the league leaders, as he leads the IL in homers (7) and RBI (20)…

Tonight’s matchup features Yohan Flande (0-0, 5.23) and Simon Castro (0-2, 6.88)

Starting Lineups Below

Charlotte
Short 7
Sanchez 4
Anderson 9
Bell 3
Phegley 2
Loman DH
Tolleson 5
Gallagher 8
Garcia 6
Castro 1


Gwinnett

Constanza 7
Pastornicky 4
Terdoslavich 9
Mejia 3
Leonard 5
Cunningham 8
Parraz DH
Yepez 2
Kazmar 6
Flande 1

-JD-

Game Preview: Gwinnett Braves (8-9) vs. Charlotte Knights (5-12)

The Gwinnett Braves (8-9) took to the road and get back on track, winning two straight over the Charlotte Knights. The G-Braves are back in town today, facing the Knights in a home-road split series, before they hit the road for eight straight games.

Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman is still with the G-Braves rehabbing from an oblique injury. Last night, the left-handed hitting Freeman went 5-for-5 with two doubles, two runs and two RBI in their 6-0 victory over the Knights. He will play first and hit third today, as he hopes to join the Braves roster tomorrow.

However, for today, he will be in the lineup and ready to go for the G-Braves, as they try and make it three straight victories. The Braves enter tonight’s contest in third place in the South Division and one game back of second-place Norfolk.

Sean Gilmartin (1-0) will take the ball for the G-Braves. So far, so good for Gilmartin, as he possesses a 1-0 mark with a 1.69 ERA. In his last start, he went seven Innings, allowing one unearned run and struck out won. He did not factor in the decision, as the bullpen blew a two-run lead in the ninth. This will be his second start against the Knights, as he pitched the opener on 4/5. He went five innings, allowing one run on six hits, while striking out four.

Gilmartin looks for his second Triple-A win and second straight quality start of the season.

The Knights enter the contest seven games back of Durham and on a four game losing streak. The team has struggled both offensively and on the mound. The hitters are 10th in the league in batting with a .238 batting average and are third to last in homers (9). On the mound, the Knights possess the third highest ERA in the league at 4.99.

Andre Rienzo (1-1) makes his fourth start of the season. He is 1-1 with a 7.16 ERA. In his lone start against the G-Braves, he went five innings, allowing four runs. He was credited with the loss.

The matchup is set and the lineups are below.

Charlotte
Durango 8
Sanchez 6
Anderson 7
Bell DH
Loman 3
Tolleson 5
Short 9
Anderson 2
Garcia 1
Rienzo 1

Gwinnett Constanza 7
Pastornicky 4
Freeman 3
Mejia DH
Terdoslavich 9
Cunningham 8
Leonard 5
Pagnozzi 2
Kazmar 6
Gilmartin 1

-Jd-

Game Preview: G-Braves (3-0) vs. Knights (0-3)

The Gwinnett Braves (3-0) are off to their best start in franchise history after sweeping a twin bill form the Charlotte Knights (0-3) on Saturday night.

The G-Braves got started early, as Ernesto Mejia capped a four-run first inning with a three-run home run in Game 1. The first baseman was not done, as he homered again to left field, helping the G-Braves win the first game of the twinbill, 6-4.

In Game 2, David Carpenter tossed 3.2 innings of shutout ball, holding down the Knights offense through five innings. The Knights would get on the board on a solo shot by Seth Loman, but it was not enough as the G-Braves prevailed behind strong pitching from Carpenter and Yohan Flande. Sean Kazmar’s two-run single in the second inning proved to be the game-winner, as the G-Braves took Game 2, 2-1.

Today, the Braves finish off their home stand as Tim Corcoran (0-0) makes his season debut against Simon Castro (0-0).
Corcoran is entering his 14th professional season. In 429 MiLB appearances (56 starts), he is 58-52 with a 4.26 ERA. From 2005-2007, the right-hander made 40 appearances (17 starts) for the Tampa Bay Rays. He went 5-9 with a 4.97 ERA in 130.1 innings. Last season, he went 7-4 with a 2.50 ERA with the Delfines of the Mexican League.

His opposition will be Castro. The 6-foot, 5-inch, 230-pound right-hander has been one of the top prospects in the White Sox organization since being traded for Carlos Quentin in 2011. The key acquisition in the Quinton trade has been solid, last season he went a combined 7-5 with 88 strikeouts in 117 innings through three different levels. This will be his sixth career start for the Knights, as he went 1-1 with a 4.32 ERA last season.

The Braves will try and make it four straight today. The lineups are below and Coolray is ready to rock at 2:05 p.m.

Charlotte Knights Starting Lineup
Mitchell 7
Sanchez 6
Morel 5
Danks DH
Greene 9
Phegley 2
Loman 3
Tolleson 4
Durango 8
Castro 1

Gwinnett Starting Lineup
Constanza 7
Pastornicky 4
Terdoslavich 9
Mejia 3
Parraz DH
Cunningham 8
Leonard 5
Yepez 2
Kazmar 6
Corcoran 1

-JD_

Game Preview: G-Braves (1-0) vs. Knights (0-1)

The Gwinnett Braves took the opener last night, 5-4. Sean Gilmartin (1-0) was impressive, hurling five innings, scattering six hits and allowing one run. He picked up his first victory of the season and his second as a G-Brave.

Shortstop Tyler Pastornicky got off to a blazing start, going 4-for-4 with two doubles and a stolen base. The Sarosota, FL native looked sharp on the field as well, converting on all five of his chances.

Andrew Russell locked it down for the G-Braves, getting out of a jam in the eighth inning and going on to toss two scoreless frames. The Aussie struck out four of the six hitters he faced. He is now 3-for-5 in save opportunities with the G-Braves.

Tonight, the G-Braves and the Knights will make up Thursday night’s rainout with a doubleheader starting at 5:05 p.m. RHP David Hale (0-0) will square off against RHP Andre Rienzo (0-0) in Game 1, while LHP Daniel Rodriguez (0-0) takes the ball against RHP Tony Pena Jr. (0-0) in Game 2.

Hale was selected by the Atlanta Braves in the third round of the 2009 First Year Player Draft out of Princeton University. The former Tiger has bounced around from starter to reliever, however last season he flourished as full time starter in Double-A Mississippi. In 27 starts, Hale went 8-4 with a 3.77 ERA. He topped the Southern League in starts, while finishing fourth in strikeouts (124).

His opponent, Andre Rienzo has been a coveted Chicago (AL) prospect for a few years. Last season, the hard-throwing righty had to battle a 50-game suspension, forcing him to miss a 1/3 of the season. Upon his return, he dominated across three different levels, going 7-3 with a 2.53 ERA. He limited hitters to a combined .206 batting average. Baseball America ranks him the No. 7 prospect in the Sox organization.

In the night cap, Rodriguez will make his third affiliated appearance of his career. The left-hander spent seven years with the Saraperos de Saltillo of the Mexican League. After signing with the Braves on 8/14/12, Rodriguez made two appearances for the G-Braves, going 0-0 with a 1.50 ERA in six innings. He went 11-5 with a 2.54 ERA with Saltillo last year.

He will go up against Tony Pena Jr. The son of former big league catcher Tony Pena, has bounced around from organizations (ATL, KC, SF, BOS), landing with the White Sox organization in the offseason. Last season with the Triple-A Pawtucket Red Sox’s, he went 1-9 with a 4.75 ERA. The right-hander began his career as a middle infielder for the Atlanta Braves organization in 2000.

Tonight should be a treat, as the G-Braves look to start the season 2-0 for the first time in Franchise history. Joe Leonard will receive his MiLB Gold Glove award in between games.

Last season, the G-Braves went 5-3 in doubleheaders, sweeping two, splitting one and getting swept once.

Game One Lineups are below:

Charlotte Knights Starting Lineup

Mitchell 8
Sanchez 4
Morel 5
Danks 9
Greene 6
Loman DH
Anderson C
Tolleson LF
Gallagher 3
Rienzo P

Gwinnett Braves Starting Lineup

Constanza 7
Pastornicky 6
Terdoslavich DH
Mejia 3
DeWitt 4
Cunningham 8
Leonard 5
Parraz 9
Yepez 2
Hale 1

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