The Gwinnett Braves opened a critical two game series in Durham, N.C. with the Bulls Monday night with a 2-1 win. The G-Braves cut the Bulls lead to 2.5 games in the International League South pennant chase. Gwinnett has drawn even in the Wild Card hunt after starting the day 1.5 games behind the Lehigh Valley IronPigs but LV dropped both ends of a doubleheader against the Syracuse Chiefs Monday to fall into a tie with the G-Braves.
Gwinnett scored in the 1st inning when Mauro Gomez singled to left field bringing home Ruben Gotay after he had reached base on a line drive to left. The score remained 1-0 until the bottom of the 3rd when Leslie Anderson scored Durham’s only run on a passed ball charged to J.C. Boscan. Gwinnett starter Todd Redmond worked his way out of the jam by striking out two of the last three batters in the inning leaving the bases full of Bulls. That would be the lone run for the game for the Bulls while the G-Braves added an insurance run in the 6th inning after Bulls starter Alexander Torres walked Gotay and Stefan Gartrell to start the inning and Gomez then hit a liner to right that scored Gotay from second base.
Final Score: Gwinnett Braves 2 Durham Bulls 1
A strong outing from G-Braves starterTodd Redmond (W, 10-8, 2.91 ERA) was followed by equally strong performances out of the pen first by Cory Gearrin (H,5) then by Jairo Asencio (S, 24).
Redmond pitched six innings and only surrendered one run (earned) on six hits while walking three and striking out nine. Redmond bounced back from a poor start against Charlotte in his last outing when he got hammered for six earned runs and nine hits in 5.2 innings pitched. The Knights game is the only blemish in his last 10 starts. Redmond is 5-0 with a 2.51 ERA in 61.0 innings pitched and 59 K’s since July 10th; Gearrin came on in the 7th inning and worked 1.2 innings without allowing a run or a hit and struck out four of the five outs he recorded while walking a pair of batters. He now has 53 strike outs in 45.1 IP for Gwinnett; Asencio entered the game with two outs in the 8th and runners on first and second and retired all four hitters he faced to earn his International League leading 24th save of the year.
Gwinnett’s offense was held to a pair of runs on eight hits with 1B Mauro Gomez (.292, 21 HRs/76 RBI) leading the way. For the second game in a row Gomez reached base on every trip to the plate going 3-for-3 with his 32nd double and walked once while driving in both of Gwinnett’s runs. Gomez was 4-for-4 with a walk in five trips the previous game with Norfolk. He is 7-for-7 with four singles, two doubles, a homerun and has driven in four runs while scoring three times in the last two games. Gomez is hitting .439 since August 19th and has raised his average to .292 for the year during this stretch; 2B Ruben Gotay (.259, 3 HR/23 RBI) was 1-for-3, reached base twice on walks and scored both G-Braves runs; DH Stefan Gartrell (.265, 25 HRs/88 RBI) also reached base every at-bat going 2-for-2 and drawing two base-on-balls.
Gwinnett and Durham meet for the final time in the regular season Tuesday night in Durham with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. Yohan Flande (8-8, 3.88 ERA) will go for the G-Braves while the Bulls answer with Brian Baker (7-8, 6.27 ERA).
International League News:
The IL announced Gwinnett’s own Mauro Gomez has been named Batter of the Week for the week ending August 28th while Columbus pitcher Paolo Espino received Pitcher of the Week honors.
Visit Pert Plus MiLB Stars to vote for the G-Braves duo of RHP Julio Teheran and LHP Mike Minor. Voting will determine which MiLB prospect fans believe will have the biggest Major League impact of 55 Triple-A prospects.
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