Results tagged ‘ Juan Jaime ’

Series Preview: Gwinnett Braves (6-11) vs. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (9-9)

Pitching probables

Mon: LHP Manny Banuelos (0-1, 3.77 ERA) vs. RHP Jaron Long (0-1, 6.75 ERA)

Tues: RHP Williams Perez (1-0, 1.69 ERA) vs. RHP Chase Whitley (2-0, 2.12 ERA)

Wed: RHP Matt Wisler (0-2, 4.60 ERA) vs. RHP Kyle Davies (1-1, 6.75 ERA)

Williams Perez (Karl Moore)

Williams Perez (Karl Moore)

The Gwinnett Braves open a seven-game homestand with three 6:35 p.m. contests against the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, the Triple-A affiliate of the New York Yankees. The Railriders have finished fifth in the six-team International League North Division in each of the past two seasons, but they have had Gwinnett’s number. The G-Braves are 4-12 against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre since 2012 and have not won any of the eight games between the two clubs at Coolray Field. This will be the G-Braves’ first foray outside of the IL South Division this season. They were 32-46 against non-divisional opponents in 2014.

Pitching: Gwinnett and Scranton/Wilkes-Barre are evenly matched statistically in the pitching department. The G-Braves’ staff enters the series with the league’s sixth-lowest earned-run average at 3.31 (55 ER in 149.1 IP), while the RailRiders sit in seventh with a 3.35 ERA (61 ER in 164.0 IP). The teams are also extremely similar in terms of their pitching staffs’ control. The G-Braves have a 2.39 strikeouts-to-walks ratio (146/61). The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre staff’s rate is 2.55 (153/60).

However, the G-Braves hold the advantage in individual stats. Tuesday’s starter, Perez, boasts the seventh-lowest ERA in the league at 1.69. In the bullpen, left-hander Donnie Veal enters the series tied for the league lead in holds (four) and appearances (nine). Righty Aaron Kurcz is tied for fourth in saves with four.

Batting: The larger differences between the two teams in this series show up in their offensive approaches. The G-Braves use a speed-based game to score runs. The RailRiders’ lineup, meanwhile, produces more power and hardly ever attempts to steal bases.

Gwinnett has a league-low three home runs through 17 games, but it leads the league with 21 stolen bases. Ten of those swipes have come from outfielder Eury Perez, who has been caught twice and was 27-for-31 in steal attempts in 2014 while playing in the Washington Nationals’ and New York Yankees’ organizations. Outfielder Todd Cunningham hit a team-best .429 (12-for-28) with two doubles and a triple during the nine-game road trip and returns to Coolray Field on a seven-game hitting streak.

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre has eight home runs, which is tied for the seventh-most in the league, but has stolen four bases in eight attempts. RailRiders outfielder Ben Gamel leads the league with a .404 batting average (19-for-47), ranks second with a .472 on-base percentage and sits behind teammate Ramon Flores (.611) for fourth in slugging percentage with a .596 mark. Flores is also tied for second in the league with four home runs.

G-Bites: Gwinnett returns home with a new-look bullpen compared to when it left town April 16. RHP Kanekoa Texeira went on the disabled list along with infielder Sean Kazmar on April 17. That opened a spot for RHP Mitchell Boggs, who the Atlanta Braves signed to a minor-league contract April 20. The Braves also re-signed LHP Greg Smith the next day to join the G-Braves’ corps of relievers. The G-Braves activated catcher Jose Yepez off of the disabled list to fill Kazmar’s roster spot.

RHPs John Cornely and Michael Kohn got the call to Atlanta on Friday, April 24, while RHPs Sugar Ray Marimon and Juan Jaime returned to Gwinnett. Marimon made one appearance for the G-Braves before Atlanta called him up on April 13. Jaime saved 18 games for Gwinnett in 2014 and began the 2015 season with the Braves.

The G-Braves will finish their homestand with a four-game series Thursday-Sunday against the Toledo Mud Hens at Coolray Field.

Spring Training Weekend Wrap-Up 3.28-29.15

A potential Gwinnett Braves utilityman has been perhaps the hottest hitters for the Atlanta Braves in Spring Training camp for the past week, and he helped lead the Braves Saturday to a 5-3 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays.

Pedro Ciriaco went 2-for-4 and drove in two runs in the sixth inning to tie the game at three runs apiece while spending time defensively in center and left field during the contest in Dunedin, Fla. He has hit safely in six of his last seven games while batting .526 (10-for-19) with a pair of runs scored, a double, a triple, 10 RBI and a stolen base. Among qualifiers, Ciriaco leads the team with a .380 batting average (19-for-50) for the spring.

Utilityman Pedro Ciriaco's 19 hits during Atlanta Braves Spring Training camp are the second-most on the team. (Photo by Karl Moore)

Infielder/outfielder Pedro Ciriaco’s 19 hits during Atlanta Braves Spring Training camp are the second-most on the team. (Photo by Karl Moore)

The Braves dropped their second game of the weekend 4-2 Sunday to the Pittsburgh Pirates at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

Other possible G-Braves position players’ stats from Saturday against Toronto:

Sean Kazmar (3B), 1-for-2, R.

Seth Loman (1B), 0-for-2.

Joe Benson (LF-CF), 0-for-1, R, BB.

Jesus Flores (C), 0-for-1.

Cedric Hunter entered the game in the eighth inning as a defensive replacement in left field but did not receive an at-bat.

A pair of possible G-Braves right-handed relievers also combined to throw 1 1/3 scoreless innings against the Blue Jays. Brandon Cunniff (H, 2) breezed through the eighth inning with nothing more than a walk allowed. Juan Jaime (H, 4) retired one batter but also gave up a hit and a walk in the ninth.

The Braves played most of their expected starters at their home Spring Training complex against the Pirates. Right fielder Todd Cunningham and left fielder Benson were the only two players likely to man the outfield for Gwinnett to get an at-bat. Cunningham walked and scored in the eighth, and Benson flew out to center field in the following at-bat.

Right-handed pitcher Michael Kohn (L, 1-1) was the only possible G-Braves pitcher to take the mound against Pittsburgh. He pitched the ninth but gave up the deciding two runs on two hits, including a two-run homer by second baseman Jong Ho Kang, with one strikeout.

Atlanta reassigned Kohn to minor league camp Monday and optioned fellow right-handed reliever Arodys Vizcaino to Gwinnett. Those moves leave the Braves with 36 active players in Major League camp.

The Braves will travel to face the Detroit Tigers for the fifth and final time this spring at 1:05 p.m. Monday in Lakeland, Fla. The teams have split their first four meetings, two of which were split-squad contests for Atlanta.

-JM

Spring Training Report 3.23.15

Potential Gwinnett Braves infielder Pedro Ciriaco added to his recent hot streak Monday, as the Atlanta Braves outlasted the Houston Astros 14-10 in Kissimmee, Fla.

Ciriaco entered the game as a pinch runner in the fourth inning for shortstop Andrelton Simmons after Simmons was hit by a pitch. Ciriaco tripled in his first at-bat of the game in the fifth inning to drive in two runners and scored when left fielder Eury Perez hit a ground-rule double to right field.

Ciriaco grounded out in his only other at-bat and is now 4-for-8 in his last three games with five runs batted in. His 12 hits and seven RBI both rank second on the team.

Pedro Ciriaco hit his first triple of Spring Training and drove in two runs Monday vs. Houston. (Photo by Chris Roughgarden)

Pedro Ciriaco hit his first triple of Spring Training and drove in two runs Monday vs. Houston in Kissimmee, Fla. (Photo by Chris Roughgarden)

Other possible G-Braves position players’ stats from Monday against Houston:

Perez (LF), 1-for-4, 2B, 2 RBI, BB, throwing error in the fourth inning.

John Buck (DH), 1-for-2, 2B, R, RBI, BB.

Jesus Flores (C), 0-for-5, K.

Phil Gosselin (3B), 1-for-2, fielding error in sixth inning.

Jose Constanza (CF), 0-for-1.

Jace Peterson (2B), 0-for-0, BB.

The Braves scratched scheduled right-handed starter Mike Foltynewicz, who could be part of the 2015 Gwinnett rotation, because of possible wet field conditions. Instead, seven relievers, including five who could fill the G-Braves’ bullpen, combined to cover the game.

Possible G-Braves pitchers’ stats Monday vs. the Astros:

RHP Michael Kohn (W, 1-0), 1.0 IP, 2 BB, K.

RHP Juan Jaime (H,3), 1.0 IP, H, BB, 2 K.

RHP Todd Coffey, 1.0 IP, 3 H, 2 ER.

RHP John Cornely, 1.0 IP, BB.

RHP Aaron Kurcz, 1.0 IP, BB, K.

The Braves also reassigned right-handed pitcher Sugar Ray Marimon, left-handed pitcher Donnie Veal and catcher Braeden Schlehuber to Minor League camp Monday.

Atlanta returns to its home Spring Training complex to face the Philadelphia Phillies at 1:05 p.m. Tuesday at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

-JM

Spring Training Weekend Wrap-Up 3.20-22.15

A parade of pitchers who could man the mound at Coolray Field in 2015 helped lead the Atlanta Braves to a weekend of four games in which they allowed an average of fewer than three runs per contest. The Braves split the weekend slate and are 8-12 in Grapefruit League play.

Six of seven potential Gwinnett Braves relievers who worked Saturday and Sunday did not allow a run. All seven combined for a 1.08 ERA (1 ER in 8.1 IP) with two saves and two holds. Right-hander Williams Perez (BS, 1; L, 0-1) was the only likely G-Brave pitcher to work Friday. He gave up the final four runs on seven hits, two walks and three strikeouts in a 5-1 loss to the Miami Marlins in Jupiter, Fla.

Atlanta played a pair of split-squad games Saturday. One Braves squad beat the Washington Nationals 5-2 in a home contest at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., and the other portion of the team lost 1-0 to the St. Louis Cardinals in Jupiter.

Possible G-Braves pitchers’ stats vs. Washington:

RHP Michael Kohn (H, 2), 1.0 IP, H, BB.

RHP Juan Jaime (H, 2), 1.0 IP.

RHP Brandon Cunniff (S, 1), 2.0 IP, 2 BB, 2 K.

Potential G-Braves pitchers’ numbers against St. Louis:

RHP Arodys Vizcaino,1.1 IP, H, BB.

RHP Sugar Ray Marimon, 2.0 IP, 2 H, HBP.

RHP Aaron Kurcz (L, 0-1) 0.0 IP, 2 H, ER, BB.

Left-handed reliever Donnie Veal was the only potential G-Braves hurler to pitch Sunday in a 5-3 win over the Detroit Tigers at Champion Stadium. He got his first save of Spring Training with a scoreless ninth inning during which he walked a hitter and struck out two others.

Infielder Pedro Ciriaco led possible G-Braves hitters by going 3-for-6 in two starts, including 2-for-3 against Detroit with three runs batted in. He also picked up a single and a walk as the leadoff hitter and starting shortstop vs. the Nationals.

Possible G-Braves' infielder Pedro Ciriaco had a big weekend at the plate for Atlanta. (Photo by Chris Roughgarden)

Possible G-Braves’ infielder Pedro Ciriaco had a big weekend at the plate for Atlanta. (Photo by Chris Roughgarden)

Potential G-Braves position players’ stats from Friday against Miami:

Eury Perez (CF), 1-for-4, K.

Jesus Flores (C), 1-for-4.

Phil Gosselin (3B), 1-for-2.

Jace Peterson (2B), 0-for-3, BB, K.

John Buck (1B), 0-for-1.

Joey Terdoslavich (pinch hit), 0-for-1, K.

Infielder Sean Kazmar took over at shortstop in the eighth inning but did not receive an at-bat.

Other possible G-Braves position players’ lines Saturday against the Nationals:

Todd Cunningham (CF), 2-for-4, 2B, RBI, K, outfield assist in the third inning on a play when Mike Carp was out trying to reach second base.

Jose Constanza (RF-LF), 1-for-3, R, SB.

Seth Loman (1B), 0-for-4, K.

Cedric Hunter (RF), 1-for-1, R, RBI.

Barrett Kleinknecht (3B), 0-for-1.

Corban Joseph (2B), 0-for-1.

Catcher Steve Rodriguez entered the game as a defensive replacement in the eighth inning but did not receive an at-bat.

Potential G-Braves position players’ stats vs. St. Louis:

Peterson (2B), 2-for-3, K.

Buck (C-1B), 2-for-3.

Gosselin (LF-3B-1B), 0-for-4, K.

Terdoslavich (RF-1B), 0-for-2, BB.

Joe Benson (LF-CF), 0-for-1, BB, threw out Rafael Ortega at home plate from center field in the sixth inning.

Braeden Schlehuber (C), 0-for-1.

Perez (pinch hit), 0-for-1, K.

Kazmar (SS), 0-for-1.

Other possible G-Braves position players’ stats against Detroit:

Perez (RF-CF), 1-for-5, K.

Cunningham (CF), 1-for-3, R, SB.

Constanza (LF), 1-for-1, R, SB.

Gosselin (2B), 0-for-1, RBI, BB, K.

Benson (LF-CF-RF), 0-for-1, BB, K.

Joseph (2B), 0-for-1.

Schlehuber (C), 0-for-1.

Loman (1B), 0-for-1.

Hunter (pinch hit), 0-for-1.

Flores entered the game at catcher as a defensive replacement in the ninth inning but did not receive an at-bat.

The Braves will face the Houston Astros at 1:05 p.m. Monday in Kissimmee, Fla.

-JM

Spring Training Report 3.17.15

Former Gwinnett Braves catcher Christian Bethancourt exploded for three hits, including two doubles, with two runs scored and two driven in Tuesday against the Boston Red Sox in Fort Myers, Fla.

And he did all that in the first five innings.

Bethancourt finished 3-for-4 to help lead the Atlanta Braves’ offense to its most prolific performance of Spring Training. The Braves pounded out 13 hits and defeated Boston 11-3.

Potential 2015 G-Braves Jace Peterson, Kelly Johnson and Joey Terdoslavich also doubled and scored a combined four runs with three RBI. Peterson also stole his first base of the spring with a swipe of second in the fifth inning. He advanced to third as the throw from Red Sox catcher Blake Swihart went into center field and scored on a base hit to left field by Bethancourt.

Possible G-Braves position players’ stats from Tuesday:

Peterson (2B), 1-for-3, 2B, 2 R, BB, 2 K, SB.

Johnson (1B-3B), 1-for-3, 2B, R, RBI, K.

Terdoslavich (LF-1B), 1-for-4, 2B, R, RBI, K.

Todd Cunningham (RF), 1-for-3, R, K.

Pedro Ciriaco (2B-3B), 1-for-1, RBI.

Jose Constanza (LF), 0-for-2, K.

Braeden Schlehuber (C), 0-for-1.

Joe Benson (CF), 0-for-1.

John Buck (DH, pinch hit), 0-for-1.

Phil Gosselin (SS), 0-for-0, BB, fielding error in the eighth inning.

Meanwhile, a trio of pitchers who could appear for the G-Braves this season were part of the relief corps that finished the game after starter Shelby Miller (W, 1-1) held the Red Sox scoreless through four innings.

RHP Brandon Cunniff, 1.0 IP, 3 H, ER.

RHP Juan Jaime (H, 2), 1.0 IP, BB, K.

RHP Sugar Ray Marimon, 1.0 IP, H, ER, BB.

Atlanta will return to their home Spring Training facilities to play the New York Yankees at 6:05 p.m. Wednesday at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

-JM

Spring Training Report 3.13.15

The Atlanta Braves started two pitchers Friday who are in contention for a spot in the starting rotation but could also be key members of the Gwinnett Braves’ rotation. Neither made it through their respective first innings, however, as Atlanta dropped a pair of split-squad games to the Detroit Tigers and New York Mets.

Right-hander Mike Foltynewicz (L, 0-1) gave up five runs, although four were unearned, on three hits and two walks with one strikeout in 2/3 of an inning of a 12-2 loss to the Tigers at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Left-hander Manny Banuelos (L, 0-2) also allowed five runs (all earned) on three hits and two walks with a strikeout and two wild pitches against the Mets in Port St. Lucie. The Braves ultimately fell to New York 13-2.

One bright spot on the mound was the performance of right-handed starter Cody Martin, who won the 2014 G-Braves’ Most Outstanding Pitcher Award in 2014. Martin held Detroit scoreless through three innings of relief with one hit and one walk allowed, a hit batsman and three strikeouts.

Other possible G-Braves pitchers’ stats vs. Detroit:

RHP Todd Coffey, 0.1 IP, H, BB.

RHP Jose Veras, 1.0 IP, ER, 2 H, BB, HBP, WP.

RHP Aaron Kurcz, 1.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 H, K.

Potential Gwinnett pitchers’ lines against New York:

RHP Carlos Fisher, 1.1 IP, 4 ER, 3 H, BB, K.

RHP Williams Perez, 2.0 IP, 2 H, 2 K.

RHP Juan Jaime, 0.1 IP, ER, H, 4 BB, WP.

RHP Arodys Vizcaino, 1.1 IP, ER, H, BB, 3 K.

RHP Brandon Cunniff, 1.0 IP, K.

RHP Jake Brigham, 0.2 IP.

Offensively, potential G-Braves players scored three of the Braves’ four runs Friday combined between the two games. First baseman Joey Terdoslavich and catcher Braeden Schlehuber both entered the game against Detroit as pinch runners and came around to score. Designated hitter Matt Kennelly singled and scored Atlanta’s first run in the fifth inning vs. the Mets as part of his 1-for-3 day.

Potential G-Braves position players’ stats Friday vs. the Tigers:

Terdoslavich (1B), 0-for-1, R.

Schlehuber (C), 0-for-1, R.

Cedric Hunter (RF-CF), 1-for-3, RBI.

Pedro Ciriaco (SS), 0-for-3.

Mycal Jones (DH, pinch hit), 0-for-1, K.

Corban Joseph (3B), 0-for-1.

Barrett Kleinknecht (1B), 0-for-1.

Possible G-Braves position players’ stats Friday vs. the Mets:

Phil Gosselin (SS), 2-for-3, RBI, K.

Jace Peterson (2B), 1-for-3, K.

Todd Cunningham (RF), 0-for-3, K.

John Buck (C), 1-for-2, BB, K.

Eury Perez (LF), 1-for-3.

Jose Peraza (2B), 1-for-2.

Joe Benson (RF), 1-for-1.

Seth Loman (1B), 0-for-1.

Jose Yepez (DH, pinch hit), 0-for-1.

The Braves will remain at Champion Stadium for the weekend. They are scheduled to face the Houston Astros at 6:05 p.m. Saturday and the Toronto Blue Jays at 1:05 p.m. Sunday.

-JM

Spring Training Report 3.9.15

A handful of pitchers that could see time with the Gwinnett Braves this season combined Monday to limit the Washington Nationals to a single tally in a 2-1 victory for the Atlanta Braves in Viera, Fla.

Starters competing for the final rotation spot, left-hander Wandy Rodriguez and righty Chien-Ming Wang, each threw three shutout innings, allowing two hits each. Rodriguez (1-0) struck out two batters and earned the victory, while Wang picked up his first hold of the spring after he walked two and struck out one.

Other potential G-Braves pitchers’ stats from Monday:

RHP Michael Kohn (H, 1) 1.0 IP, K.

RHP Jake Brigham (S, 1), 1.0 IP, 2 H, ER, BB, 2 K.

Potential G-Braves position players’ stats from Monday:

Joey Terdoslavich (LF-1B), 1-for-1.

Jose Peraza (2B), 0-for-4.

John Buck (DH), 0-for-4, 3 K.

Jesus Flores (C), 0-for-1.

Infielder Sean Kazmar entered the game as a defensive replacement at third base, and outfielder Cedric Hunter entered in left field in the ninth inning. Neither player received an at-bat.

Before the game, the Braves optioned left-handed pitcher Ian Thomas and infielder Elmer Reyes to Gwinnett. They also re-assigned right-handed pitcher Matt Capps, infielder Johan Camargo, and catchers Yenier Bello and Tanner Murphy to Minor League camp. That leaves 60 active players in the Braves’ Major League camp.

The Braves will host the New York Mets for a game at 1:05 p.m. Tuesday at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Right-hander and Opening Day starter Julio Teheran will start on the mound for the Braves. The Mets will send righty Bartolo Colon to the mound.

-JM

Spring Training Report 3.6.15

The Atlanta Braves came up short in a 9-8 slugfest Friday against the Washington Nationals at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.  However, a pair of potential 2015 Gwinnett Braves provided much of Atlanta’s firepower.

Infielder Pedro Ciriaco and outfielder Cedric Hunter were the only two Braves to play the entire game, and they accounted for four of the team’s 14 hits.

Ciriaco fell a triple shy of the cycle, going 3-for-4 with a solo home run in the third inning and a two-out, two-run double in the fifth that gave the Braves an 8-7 lead.  Hunter scored the go-ahead run after he had singled in the preceding at-bat.  He finished 1-for-5.

Other possible G-Brave position players:

Jace Peterson (2B), 2-for-4, 2 R.

Braeden Schlehuber (C), 1-for-3, RBI, threw out attemping basestealer in the fifth inning.

Joey Terdoslavich (1B), 0-for-2, 2 K.

Jose Peraza (2B), 0-for-1.

Todd Cunningham (CF), 0-for-1.

Jose Yepez (C), 0-for-0, HBP.

Three pitchers who project to make Atlanta’s Opening Day roster, Alex Wood, Jason Grilli and Josh Outman, covered the first four innings on the mound.  Manager Fredi Gonzalez then turned to four potential G-Braves to cover the final five frames.

RHP Juan Jaime, 0.2 IP, 3 H, 4 ER, 3 BB.

RHP Michael Kohn, 1.1 IP, 2 BB, K.

RHP Arodys Vizcaino (BS, 1; L, 0-1), 1.0 IP, 1 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, WP.

RHP Tyrell Jenkins, 2.0 IP, 2 H, K.

The Braves will enter their first of three split-squad days of Spring Training on Saturday.  Part of the team will remain at Champion Stadium to take on the Detroit Tigers at 1:05 p.m., while another portion will face the New York Mets at 1:10 p.m. in Port St. Lucie, Fla.  The club will then come back together for a 1:05 p.m. contest Sunday against the Houston Astros in Kissimmee, Fla.

G-Braves Hot Stove: La Stella Traded for Vizcaino

The Atlanta Braves traded one former G-Brave for another yesterday, sending infielder Tommy La Stella and an international bonus pool slot (No. 4) to the Chicago Cubs in exchange for right-hander Arodys Vizcaino and three international bonus pool slots (No. 2, No. 3, No. 4).

Time for a G-Braves-centric look at the trade:

La Stella entered 2014 with plenty of hype, having earned the Braves’ “Best Hitter for Average” and “Best Strike Zone Discipline” distinctions from Baseball America.  Though he didn’t display much power in his Triple-A debut, he was as-advertised for Gwinnett, batting .293 with a .384 on-base percentage in 47 games.  He ranked among International League leaders in lowest TPA/SO ratio (2nd, 1 SO/14.21 TPA), walks (T-8th, 25) and on-base percentage (10th) as of May 28, and Atlanta rewarded him with his first Major League call-up.

A few more of La Stella’s Gwinnett highlights:

  • He reached base safely in 21 consecutive games from April 10 to May 2, batting .325 (27-for-83) with one double and 14 RBIs.  It was the longest on-base streak by a G-Brave in 2014.
  • In 23 games at Coolray Field, he batted .346 (27-for-78) with two doubles and eight RBIs.
  • In his final game with Gwinnett on May 27 at Pawtucket, he belted his first career Triple-A home run, a two-run shot off RHP Matt Barnes.

La Stella started hot in the Majors, batting .411 with nine multi-hit games over his first 16 contests.  He leveled off, however, batting .251 with 16 doubles, one home run and 31 RBIs in 93 total games with the Braves.  By season’s end, he saw decreased playing time with the emergence of fellow former G-Brave Phil Gosselin.

In sending La Stella to the Cubs, the Braves have helped clear up their second base log-jam.  Gosselin is a good bet to be the Braves’ starting second baseman next April, but he may only be a placeholder for Jose Peraza.  The Braves’ top prospect and 2014 Minor League Player of the Year, Peraza batted .339 with a .364 on-base percentage and 60 stolen bases between two levels last season, but hasn’t yet played above Double-A.  He could follow the same path as La Stella, starting the year in a Gwinnett uniform before earning a Major League call-up during the season.  Second base sets up to be an intriguing spot for the G-Braves in 2015, as Gosselin, Peraza or Tyler Pastornicky could see time at the position.

Yesterday’s trade also brings the hard-throwing Vizcaino back to the Braves organization.  Before Tommy John surgery in 2012 and a trade to the Cubs that July, he was included with Julio Teheran and Randall Delgado as the next wave of prospect pitchers bound for Atlanta.  The Coolray Field faithful saw him briefly during the pitching-rich 2011 season, when he went 1-0 with a 1.29 ERA, no walks and eight strikeouts in 7.0 innings with Gwinnett.  Vizcaino made his Major League debut with Atlanta that same season, going 1-1 with a 4.67 ERA, nine walks and 17 strikeouts in 17 games, 17.1 innings.

Vizcaino had a comeback year in 2014, as he went 1-1 with a 3.51 ERA, 18 walks and 42 strikeouts over 41.0 innings in the Cubs’ minor league system.  His September call-up to Chicago produced a 5.40 ERA in five outings, 5.0 innings.

Arodys Vizcaino went 1-0 with a 1.29 ERA in six relief outings with Gwinnett in 2011.

Arodys Vizcaino went 1-0 with a 1.29 ERA in six relief outings with Gwinnett in 2011. (Gwinnett Braves)

Though Vizcaino logged most of his appearances at Triple-A Iowa, he was certainly acquired to compete for a bullpen spot with Atlanta this Spring.  His addition also provides competition for another flame-throwing former G-Brave, right-hander Juan Jaime.  Jaime and his upper-90’s fastball have been impressive in both Gwinnett and Atlanta, but he’ll have to improve his control and limit his walks (45 in 53.1 combined innings) to stick in the Majors.

This deal in the long run seems to be more about the international bonus pool slots and the minor league depth the Braves can build with them, but it also helps Atlanta bolster their pitching staff while clearing up the picture at second base.

-DL

Series Preview: Gwinnett Braves (30-26) vs. Columbus Clippers (26-31)

Pitching Probables

Tue: Zach Stewart (3-2, 4.03) vs. Gabriel Arias (0-2, 5.73)

Wed: Cody Martin (3-4, 3.36) vs. Danny Salazar (0-3, 7.11)

Thomas (Lofton)

Thomas (Lofton)

Thu: LHP Daniel Rodriguez (4-6, 3.38) vs. Tyler Cloyd (2-3, 4.91)

Fri: Gus Schlosser (3-2, 4.94) vs. Kyle Davies (2-3, 3.40)

The Gwinnett Braves open up an eight-game homestand at Coolray Field beginning Tuesday, June 3 against the Columbus Clippers, Triple-A affiliate of the Cleveland Indians. Gwinnett enters the contest one game out of first place in the Wild Card standings, while Columbus is 5.5 games back of the front-running Rochester Red Wings in the Wild Card race.

Pitching: Columbus enters the series with one of the better pitching staffs in the league, ranking sixth in the IL with a 3.75 ERA. The Clippers have lost left-hander T.J. House and right-hander Trevor Bauer to Cleveland, but still have a bevy of arms to rely on. Danny Salazar is off to a slow start in 2014, but features electric stuff. The right-hander has a mid-90’s fastball, hard slider and a change-up. In 12.2 innings with the Clippers, he has struck out 15 batters.

While Salazar works out his kinks in hopes to return to the Major Leagues, the Clippers will rely heavily on the bullpen during the series. With Mark Lowe and Vinnie Pestano in the back end of the pen’, the Clippers have MLB talent and experience to close out games. Lowe is 1-1 with a 3.86 ERA and is 8-for-9 in save opportunities, while Pestano is 1-3 with a 2.41 ERA.

Gwinnett will counter with a talented bullpen of their own, as Juan Jaime, Ian Thomas and Atahualpa Severino are ready to close out games for the G-Braves. Jaime enters the series with a 1-0 mark and 3.10 ERA in 21 games. The right-hander is a perfect 10-for-10 in save chances, while striking out 32 in 20.1 innings.

Thomas returns from Atlanta after serving another short stint with the Braves. The lefty has dominated the Triple-A circuit, going 0-0 with a 0.00 ERA in 5.0 innings. He has fanned eight batters, while only allowing one hit. Thomas is working out his slider in Triple-A, which can prove to be an asset once he gets it going.

The addition of Thomas hasn’t slowed Severino, as the southpaw entered the series with a team-leading six holds. He is 2-1 with a 3.00 ERA in 20 games. Severino has struck out 32 batters in 24.0 innings.

Batting: Gwinnett’s offense was cooled off on their current road trip, scoring 24 runs in eight games and was shutout twice. However, Gwinnett still has the No.2 offense in the IL. Phil Gosselin continues to pace the attack, batting .324 (66-for-204) with 14 doubles, two triples, one homer and 13 RBIs. Gosselin is tied for the team lead in runs (28), doubles and triples.

Tyler Pastornicky has taken his demotion from Atlanta in stride. In four games since being sent down, the infielder is batting .471 (8-for-17) with two runs scored and one double. Last season, Pastornicky hit .292 (84-for-288) with 13 doubles, two triples, four homers and 28 RBIs in 74 games with Gwinnett.

Columbus will rely on Roberto Perez to lead the offensive attack. The backstop is having a great season, batting .321 (27-for-84) with four doubles, five homers and 19 RBIs. He leads the team in batting, homers and is second in RBIs.

He will look to carry the offense that lost Jesus Aguilar to an early season promotion.

“Excuses are the nails that built the house of failure.” –Jenna Wyatt-

-JD-

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