Results tagged ‘ chris roughgarden ’

Julio Teheran Set For Memorial Day Fireworks

5.28.12 GBraves Game Notes

Photo courtesy of Kyle Hess

The No. 1 pitching prospect in the Atlanta Braves organization according to Baseball America and MLB.com is ready to set off some early fireworks for the Gwinnett Braves on Memorial Day. Julio Teheran (4-2, 2.98) will take the mound for the G-Braves against former Major Leaguer and current Lehigh Valley IronPig right-hander Dave Bush (4-3, 2.73) for a 7:05 p.m. scheduled first pitch from Coolray Field.

The Gwinnett Braves honor Memorial Day on Monday night at Coolray Field with players and coaches wearing special camouflage jerseys sponsored by Kipper Tool. Those jerseys will be auctioned off following the game, with proceeds benefitting Fisher House. A special Memorial Day Fireworks extravaganza follows the game. Monday night is also another Kids Eat Free Monday, where all kids 12 and under will receive a voucher for a free hot dog, bag of chips and a small soda.

The IL South leading G-Braves (30-20) boast the second best record in the International League as they prepare to face the Philadelphia Phillies Triple-A affiliate. Lehigh Valley (28-22) is in town for four games at Coolray Field as the two teams play each other just eight times this season. The next match-up will take place in Pennsylvania from June 5-8 amidst a four-game season series finale, barring a playoff match-up.

Sunday afternoon Jair Jurrjens was brilliant against the Rochester Red Wings for eight scoreless innings en route to his third win with Gwinnett. It was a pitchers duel as the G-Braves snuck past the Twins affiliate 1-0 from Coolray Field. With the win, Gwinnett extended their win-streak to three games as they defeated Rochester in the four-game series with three wins and won the overall season series 5-3. Christian Marrero drove in the lone run of the game on his triple, scoring Ernesto Mejia all the way from first base.

Photo courtesy of Chris Roughgarden

Lehigh Valley (28-22, T-2nd IL North) vs Gwinnett (30-20, 1st IL South) 

The IronPigs are in Georgia for just four days as the two teams face-off for the first time in 2012. Currently, Lehigh Valley is tied for second place in the IL South alongside Buffalo, the Mets affiliate who defeated Gwinnett in their season series this year 6-2. Aside from the three-game win streak for the G-Braves, they are 5-5 in their last 10 games and 17-8 at home this year.

Memorial Day – Monday, May 28 Starting Line-up from Coolray Field in Lawrenceville, Georgia:

Julio Teheran (4-2, 2.98) will take the mound for the G-Braves against former Major Leaguer and current Lehigh Valley IronPig righty Dave Bush (4-3, 2.73) for a 7:05 p.m. scheduled first pitch from Coolray Field. This series features two National League teams, therefore the pitchers will be hitting in all four games. The game will be broadcast on WDUN 550 AM and 102.9 FM with Tony Schiavone calling the play-by-play.

Photo courtesy of Daniel Hamby

Lehigh Valley IronPigs Batting Order:

1) CF – Kyle Hudson

2) 2B – Kevin Frandsen

3) LF – Domonic Brown

4) C – John Suomi

5) RF – Steve Susdorf

6) 1B – Cody Overbeck

7) 3B – Tim Kennelly

8) SS – Andres Blanco

9) P – Dave Bush

G-Braves Batting Order

1) LF – Jose Constanza

2) CF – Luis Durango

3) RF – Stefan Gartrell

4) 1B – Ernesto Mejia

5) 3B – Joey Terdoslavich

6) C – Jose Yepez

7) SS – Josh Wilson

8) 2B – Lance Zawadzki

9) P – Julio Teheran

By: Tony Piraro

Interview With G-Braves Stefan Gartrell

Photo courtesy of Chris Roughgarden

On Walk-off Home Run against Buffalo:

“I was happy I put the ball in play,” said Gartrell. “I was really happy I put the ball in the air and hit it hard. After I hit it, I knew it was gone. It was a lot of fun to come around third base and look at all my teammates just going crazy and going ‘Aghhhhhh!’ so that was fun.”

Photo courtesy of Kyle Hess

Knowing the Buffalo pitcher did not want to throw him a fastball:

“When a guy throws you four straight off-speed pitches and then he shakes, that usually means the catcher wants a fastball since he’s called for so much off-speed,” Gartrell said. “It looked like he (pitcher) didn’t want to bounce it because Constanza was at third base. So he left it a little higher than the other ones and I was able to hit it.”

Photo courtesy of Daniel Hamby

On hitting behind Luis Durango and Jose Constanza this year:

“(Chuckles) It’s funny. Since May, I’ve got a bunch of two-strike hits and two-strike RBI because of those two. I’ll literally take until they get to second or third base because they’re going to go eventually,” said Gartrell. “The pitcher is worrying about them and trying to throw so hard that they’ll throw balls up and away. I get walked a lot because of it. It’s funny, when they’re on base they get a lot of things going. It’s cool to have that type of speed with their high on-base percentages. They work the pitcher and find ways. They are the 1-2 (in the batting order) and they’re the fastest guys in the league, it’s kind of crazy. I’m like, ‘Okay, I’ll wait for you to steal second, then I’ll get an RBI.’ It’s fun.”

Photo courtesy of Kyle Hess

On hitting in front of Ernesto Mejia:

“If a guy wants to try to pitch around me and not deal with me, then having Mejia behind me….People say I’m a power hitter and I have a lot of pop, but this dude (Mejia) is rediculously strong. To have a guy like that where they have to worry about both of us at some point,” said Gartrell. “Going back to the walk-off on a 2-2 pitch, he left it up because he didn’t want to throw another ball or risk facing Mejia. Stuff like that happens, I’m not getting just fastballs, but I am getting more pitches over the plate because they’re going to want to pitch to me. They’d rather give up a solo homer versus say a three-run home run.”

Photo courtesy of Leslie Watts

On listening to everyone’s opinion when struggling:

“You know where the advice is coming from. You know they want you do good. It comes from a good place so it’s not like, ‘Hey, I’m not going to listen to anybody, I got this.’ Gartrell said. “I’m not fooling myself like that. I like to be known as a humble person. But at the same time, you have to understand becuase they are not you, their methods may be different. What they saw may not be what works for me. What type of person, what type of hitter, what type of player they are or were doesn’t always work for how I am. The reason I am here is because I have always been a very aggressive hitter, to a point to where it’s overaggressive. If I become passive, or take too many pitches then there goes my aggressive swing which goes into my power. I just have to go back to my roots. Shorten up, make good contact and see what happens. The more I simplified it and not tried to crush every single ball, the more home runs came which was funny, so I like that aspect of it.”

Photo courtesy of Leslie Watts

On hitting coach Jaime Dismuke:

“Jaime was the one who said, ‘Dude, you’re fine.’ No matter what. Even if I was like, ‘No, I am not fine.’ He’s like, ‘you’re fine.’ Sometimes I’m like, ‘Jaime what do you see?’ and he says, ‘nothing.’ Then I think, there has to be something wrong. It’s just a matter of getting back to my roots as a hitter.”

Photo courtesy of Karl Moore

On being the first G-Brave player to be named IL Player of the Week in 2012:

“The funniest part is that I was probably the worst hitter in the league the first month (laughing). Then the first week of the second month, they’re like, ‘you’re the best player for the first week of May,’ which is…..sad (chuckling). Really? It took me a whole month? But that is baseball,” said Gartrell. “I just needed April to be over with. I would like to think I was just in a slump, but then things clicked. I started shortening up my swing. I guess it took me until May to figure that out. I was really glad because it gave me a lot more confidence. I try really hard to make sure my confidence doesn’t go up and down no matter how well or how bad I’m doing. Instead of folding up everything, packing up my tent and getting out of here, I made sure I just kept swinging and at some point it was going to click and that’s what happened.”

Photo courtesy of Kyle Hess

….For more on Stefan Gartrell and my interview with him, be sure to grab a Tomahawk Talk when you visit Coolray Field for the G-Braves next 10-game hometsand which is set to begin on Thursday, May 24 at 7:05 p.m. against Rochester.  

By: Tony Piraro

First Place G-Braves Begin 11-Game Homestand Saturday

Photo courtesy of Chris Roughgarden

The Gwinnett Braves (18-9) begin an 11-game stretch at home over the next 10 days, starting Saturday from Coolray Field. The first series for the G-Braves will be against the Charlotte Knights who currently reside in second place of the IL South Division directly behind Gwinnett at 14-14. The Chicago White Sox affiliate has slowed as of late, winning just four of their last 10 games.

Following the departure of Charlotte after two games, Buffalo comes to town for four games and then Toledo will conclude the trip with five games against your G-Braves. The May 11 game with the MudHens will be a doubleheader beginning at 5:00 p.m. for Game 1, after the G-Braves and Toledo’s game was postponed due to rain in Ohio last week.

With the best record in the International League (18-9) the G-Braves are focused on being consistent. Gwinnett currently has the No. 1 ranked pitching staff in the IL with a team ERA of 2.78 and their hitting is starting to heat up, especially Stefan Gartrell (pictured above). The G-Braves outfielder/designated hitter has been  a monster as of late, crushing a home run in each of his last three games including six total hits during that timespan. Gartrell is now batting .209 with four homers and 14 RBI, which is saying a lot considering he was batting .165 before the G-Braves 8-game road trip last week.

Todd Redmond takes the hill for Gwinnett on Saturday night, seeking his third win of the young season. After his last start, the right-hander was leading the IL in strikeouts (34) amidst 27 innings of work. Redmond will look to add to that total tonight in the first of 11 games from Coolray Field. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. from Lawrenceville, Georgia.

By: Tony Piraro

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