Atlanta Braves Week 10 Farm Report: A Week Chock Full of Promotions
By Clint Manry
It was a busy week as the DSL Braves saw a full slate of games during Week 10. Also, Rome continues to struggle, giving the Atlanta Braves organization their first winless week.
Week 10 in the Atlanta Braves organization featured promotions for catchers William Contreras and Jonathan Morales; outfielders Greyson Jenista and Trey Harris; and reliever Matt Hartman.
Oh yeah, the Atlanta Braves also signed free agent Dallas Keuchel to a one-year, $13 million deal, which almost gave us witness to his first start this past weekend in Gwinnett. However, Mother Nature had other plans.
If you’re new to these thoroughly prepared minor league farm reports, here are the previous nine weeks of stats, recaps, and expertise provided by yours truly!
Those of you that don’t already know, Keuchel will be making his first start for the organization on Monday, June 10 at 7:00 p.m. (EST) versus the Charleston RiverDogs — the NY Yankees’ Single-A affiliate.
(35-27) Gwinnett Stripers (AAA)
Week 10 Record: 2-4
Players of the Week
(OF) Adam Duvall
6 games, 6-for-23 (.260 BA), 2B, 3 HR, 7 RBI
There were three players that really stood out in Week 10 for Gwinnett. Duvall provided the power and RBI, but second baseman Andres Blanco and shortstop Sean Kazmar Jr. also had outstanding weeks.
Blanco finished up the week 8-for-23 (.347 BA) with two doubles, a home run and three RBI. He’s also in the midst of an 8-game hitting streak, built off three multi-hit games in that span.
Kazmar Jr. was 8-for-21 (.380 BA) with a double and two RBI, recording his 1,500th minor league hit on Thursday. The veteran minor leaguer has played well in 2019, hitting .288 in 46 games and slugging eight home runs.
Duvall’s run on good hitting this past week was a welcoming development, as he had been quiet over the past few weeks. The failed experiment in Atlanta hasn’t hindered what is an excellent job of redeeming himself this season, now with a .971 OPS in 54 games with Gwinnett.
He has 18 home runs and 13 doubles, but most of all, he’s only striking out at a 20% clip, while walking in 12.1% of his at-bats. That’s pretty darn good for a guy with a career K-rate of 30%.
(SP) Kolby Allard
1 start, 1-0, 8 IP, 6 H, ER, 0 BB, 7 K
Gwinnett really only had two strong starts in Week 10, and they happened to be back-to-back outings by Bryse Wilson on Wednesday followed by Allard’s on Thursday. The two combined for:
14 IP, 12 hits, 4 runs, 1 walk, 14 strikeouts
Allard’s performance on Thursday was more impressive, in that he lasted 8 innings (career-high) and didn’t walk anyone. The last few weeks have been great for him, as his precision on the mound is starting to pay of again.
Allard is sporting a 4.15 ERA in 2019, due to some early struggles to begin the campaign; although, he has a 5-3 record — if you’re into that kind of stuff. In Allard’s 12 starts, his K/BB-rates are promising at 6.78 K/9 and 2.9 BB/9.
Week at a Glance
June 3 – June 9
(6/3) Monday: Won 7-5 vs. Charlotte Knights
- (P) H. Ynoa: 4 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K
- (LF) T. Demeritte: 1-5, HR, 4 RBI
- (DH) A. Duvall: 2-4, 2 HR, 2 RBI
Down 1-0 in the 3rd on Monday, the Stripers hit three consecutive singles, loading the bases. Rafael Ortega and Andres Blanco both squandered the RBI opportunity, as both of them struck out. With two outs and the bases jacked, right fielder Travis Demeritte commenced to do this to the baseball:
Feeling left out, Adam Duvall — the very next batter — went oppo, giving Gwinnett an early four-run lead.
In the 5th, Duvall hit another opposite-field shot, this time giving the Stripers 100 home runs for the season (tops in the IL).
The scoring came to a halt for both teams after the 5th inning, and Gwinnett succeeded in out-slugging Charlotte.
Three other Stripers batters came away with a multi-hit night: Ryan LaMarre (2-for-5), Sean Kazmar Jr. (3-for-4) and Pedro Florimon (2-for-4).
(6/4) Tuesday: Lost 7-6 vs. Charlotte Knights
- (P) K. Wright: 4 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 0 BB, 5 K
- (1B) S. Giardina: 2-4, HR, 2 RBI
- (CF) R. Ortega: 2-4, 2B, R, BB
The suffering continued for Braves prospect, Kyle Wright, as he had yet another bad outing in Tuesday’s loss. Now 3-3 this season, Wright has surrendered 28 runs over his last 34 innings-pitched (eight starts). His ERA is now north of seven, at 7.41.
Down 5-0 in the 3rd, Travis Demeritte plated Gwinnett’s first run with an RBI- ground out:
Demeritte kept his on-base streak going (now 36 games), dating back to April 24.
After holding Charlotte in their half of the 3rd, part-time catcher Sal Giardina belted his first home run of the 2019 season:
Sean Kazmar Jr., who finished 1-for-4, pushed Gwinnett within one run in the 7th, scoring Rafael Ortega on an RBI-single to left:
Jack Lopez knocked in the final two Gwinnett runs, an 2-run single in the 9th. That would be Lopez’s only hit of the night. Adam Duvall was the only hitless batter in the Stripers lineup, going 0-for-5 with three strikeouts.
(6/5) Wednesday: Lost 6-5 vs. Charlotte Knights
- (P) B. Wilson: 6 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, BB, 7 K
- (2B) A. Blanco: 1-4, HR, 2 RBI
- (3B) P. Florimon: 1-3, 3B, RBI, 2 R
The Stripers wasted a solid outing by starter Bryse Wilson and lost a late-inning lead to Charlotte on Wednesday, the last game of their three-game series. It was Wilson’s second-straight quality-start.
With only seven total hits as a team, Travis Demeritte lost his on-base streak at 36 games when he finished 0-for-4 on Wednesday. He struck out three times.
Shortstop and No. 9 hitter, Luis Marte, ripped a home run to tie the game at one apiece in the 3rd inning:
Andres Blanco also went deep, again tying the game with a home run:
Rafael Ortega and Alex Jackson both finished with one hit each. Ortega also stole his eighth base of the season. Sean Kazmar Jr. picked up two hits on the evening, and played first base.
Chad Sobotka and A.J. Minter pitched the last two innings of the game, with Minter suffering the loss after giving up two costly home runs.
(6/6) Thursday: Won 6-1 vs. Durham Bulls
- (P) K. Allard: 8 IP, 6 H, ER, 0 BB, 7 K
- (DH) A. Duvall: 2-4, HR (GS), 4 RBI
- (C) J. Morales: 3-4, HR, RBI
As a corresponding move relating to William Contreras’ promotion to Mississippi on Wednesday, catcher Jonathan Morales was promoted from Mississippi to Gwinnett.
Morales had an outstanding debut for the Stipers:
But the first four runs scored for Gwinnett came from just one swing in the 5th inning, by Adam Duvall:
Also, Sean Kazmar Jr. did something pretty cool in Thursday’s game, recording his 1,500th minor league hit:
Left fielder Travis Demeritte hit his 16th double of 2019, and finished 1-for-3 with a run and a walk. Andres Blanco also doubled, going 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run-scored. Luis Marte finished with two stolen bases and a hit in his four at-bats.
All but third baseman Pedro Florimon picked up a hit in the win, as Gwinnett totaled 12 hits as a team.
Kolby Allard’s eight innings was the longest start by a Gwinnett starting pitcher this season, giving him three such starts in his career. Morales’ homer in the sixth inning was the 14th different Stripers batter to hit a home run this season.
(6/7) Friday: Lost 12-3 vs. Durham Bulls
- (P) P. Weigel: 3.2 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, K
- (C) A. Jackson: 1-4, HR, 2 RBI
- (RF) A. Duvall: 1-3, RBI, BB
Wow, a game that stayed competitive for the first five innings sure did get out of hand. The Bulls scored six runs between the 6th and 9th innings on Friday, routing Gwinnett.
While the game was still close, catcher Alex Jackson tied things up in the 2nd with a homer out to left:
The only other Gwinnett run came from Adam Duvall’s RBI force-out in the 6th inning. No Stripers batter finished with more than one hit, though all but Ryan LaMarre and Luis Marte finished with a knock.
Starter Patrick Weigel pitched decent Friday, given his normal workload. Weigel threw 59 pitches (33 strikes) .
Relievers Ben Rowen and Shane Carle were responsible for the breakout by Durham, allowing 10 runs combined:
- Ben Rowen: 1.1 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 0 BB, K
- Shane Carle: IP, 6 H, 6 ER, BB, 0 K
(6/8) Saturday: CANCELLED (rain)
Our chance to see newly-signed starting pitcher, Dallas Keuchel, was ruined by rain on Saturday. However, Keuchel did talk to reporters for a bit:
(6/9) Sunday: Lost 10-2 vs. Durham Bulls
- (P) K. Wright: 4.2 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, K
- (C) A. Jackson: 1-4, RBI, 3 K
- (2B) A. Blanco: 2-4, 2B, K
After Gwinnett’s game on Saturday was rained out, the Stripers/Bulls rubber match was delayed for 39-minutes due to rain, again on Sunday. Too bad the game wasn’t cancelled, as it wasn’t pretty for Gwinnett.
Sean Kazmar Jr. put the Stripers ahead in the 1st inning, with a sac-fly out to center, scoring Rafael Ortega:
Kazmar Jr. was hitless Saturday, but was the only other Gwinnett batter to knock in a run. Ortega went 1-for-3 with his run in the 1st, followed by a walk and a strikeout. Ryan LaMarre and Adam Duvall were the only other contributors on offense, both picking up a base-hit.
Starter Kyle Wright has been, quite frankly, terrible this season; though, his start Saturday wasn’t too bad. He’ll finish Week 10 with a 7.22 ERA in 9 starts. Just look at his numbers with the Stripers thus far:
3-4, 38.2 IP, 31 ER, 6 HR, 13 BB, 30 K
The real damage was done while reliever Jason Creasy was on the hill. Creasy gave up five runs from six hits, only getting two outs — the last out of the 5th inning and the first out in the 6th.