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an-eventful-night-in-the-braves-organization | September | 2009 Articles

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An eventful night in the Braves organization

Written by Joe Lucia on .

It was a really chaotic night for the entire Braves organization, and I was running around staying up until I had processed everything fully. I'm sure most of you saw that happened on FSS, with the Braves and Marlins. A quick recap: the teams traded a pair of runs each in the 1st & 3rd innings, and the Braves took the lead in the 5th. Then big inning Javy showed up, and the suddenly mortal Kris Medlen followed him, and the Marlins had tacked FIVE on the board to go up by 4. 7th inning rolls along, and the Braves manage to load the bases...and the corpse of Chipper Jones drags himself out of the dugout. We're all expecting the worst from the old man...and naturally, he rips one into the gap to clear the bases and make it a one run game. The Braves actually kept the rally going after that, with a single by Omar Infante to put men on the corners. Pinch hitter Greg Norton strode in and worked the count to 3-1...before striking out swinging on ball 4. Yeesh. Matt Diaz got HIT, and the dugouts emptied and things nearly got chippy. Martin Prado flied out, and that took care of that threat. So the ninth inning comes along, Braves still down a run. First batter is Yunel Escobar, who proceeds to plant one in the right field seats to tie the game. So awesome. Omar Infante & Kelly Johnson both walked following a Chipper flyout, to set up the blistering hot Matt Diaz...who grounds into a double play. Fail. Then in the bottom half, after a popout, Wes Helms tattoos a Mike Gonzalez fastball over the immense scoreboard in left, game over. The Braves lose a game in the wildcard standings and are now 4 out with 29 to play. I'm not going to do a full schedule analysis just yet...but this is going to be tough. Now, to happier news throughout the organization. Gwinnett is one win and one Syracuse loss away from clinching the IL's wildcard berth. Also, Barbaro Canizares & Luis Valdez made the postseason IL All-Star team. Congrats to Barbaro and Luis! Valdez's selection is super meaningful, as the IL only chooses one starter and one reliever for their team. Barbaro was chosen as the DH, and it is his first post-season honor (he was a mid-season all-star each of the past 2 years). Down in Mississippi, more hardware was handed out. OF Matt Young, just promoted to Gwinnett as I outlined yesterday, won the Southern League's "best hustler" award. Young set M-Braves highs in walks, runs and steals. What an under the radar year for him...in not so under the radar news, uber-prospect/king of the world Jason Heyward was named USA Today's minor league player of the year. He is the third Brave to win the award in its 21 years of existence, following Mark Wohlers and Andruw Jones (twice). Pretty good company. Congratulations to Jason & Matt! Not a whole lot of interesting stuff is happening in Myrtle Beach. Adam Milligan is 0 for 8 with 4 strikeouts in 2 games. Regression to the mean, folks. The legendary Randy Gress continues his improvement, raising his OPS 62 points from last year to this year. Keep up the good work Randy, you'll be in Atlanta in no time! Some interesting news out of Rome. Nate McLouth will be in town for a rehab assignment on Thursday & Friday (thank god). Hopefully he can get back to Atlanta some time next week. Theres also the issue of Julio Teheran, who pitched 7 NO HIT innings last night, only walking 1 and striking out 7. He also got 10 ground outs to 4 fly outs. Naturally, Rome couldn't score a run and Teheran got a no decision. He's still only 18 everyone. Man am I excited about this kid. And now the meat and potatoes, Danville! First game of the championship series against Elizabethton was last night. Brett Oberholtzer was sent to the hill (instead of Matt Crim, phew), and...he dominated. Oberholtzer threw a complete game 5 hitter, allowing 1 run and walking 1 while striking out 6. RSF tacked on a pair of hits and 3 RBI, and thats all Danville needed. The team goes back home to Danville tomorrow and Friday if necessary, looking to bring a title home. Pretty sure that Chris Masters will be starting, because its his turn in the rotation. Title = clinched.

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