The Braves open up the second half of the season tonight at home against Louisville. Richmond has lost a club record eleven games in a row. They are 29-63 on the season, 21 games back of Norfolk in the International League's South Division.
Anthony Lerew (0-1, 2.75) will pitch for the Braves tonight against right-hander Steve Kelly (5-4, 4.08). Tomorrow Zach Miner goes for Richmond against Elizardo Ramirez. Saturday when the Braves open a series with Indianapolis Ken Ray will get the call for Richmond against Mike Connolly, and then Sunday at 2:00 pm Braves' righty Daniel Curtis goes against lefty Cory Stewart.
Scott Thorman and Jonathan Schuerholz are with the Richmond team and should be in the lineup tonight.
The Mississippi Braves enjoy another night off as part of the Southern League's All Star Break. They'll start a three-game weekend series at West Tennessee Friday night. The Braves are 9-11 in the second half of the season so far, five games back of Birmingham in the Southern League's South Division.
Second baseman Martin Prado and right-hander Sean White will join Mississippi's roster on Friday.
Myrtle Beach continues its series against the Winston-Salem Warthogs tonight at Coastal Federal field with Kelvin Villa (0-5, 7.01) on the mound against lefty Gio Gonzalez (1-0, 4.61 ERA). The Pelicans are 7-9 on the season, 2.5 games back of Salem in the Carolina League's Southern Division.
Friday night at 7:02 pm Jake Stevens (5-7, 4.55 ERA) pitches for Myrtle Beach against fellow lefty Wes Whisler (1-4, 6.40). Then Saturday Chris Waters (2-1, 4.58) continues his comeback from shoulder surgery when he faces recently drafted Lance Broadway (1-0, 2.61).
The Braves released Myrtle Beach reliever Jake Blakeney on Thursday and recalled Manny Acosta. Blakeney was 2-0 in 24 games with a 3.27 ERA. Acosta has missed most of this season recovering from Tommy John surgery. He pitched three games in Danville preparing to re-join the Pelicans and had an ERA of 3.00 in six innings. He walked one and struck out eight.
As of now, Willie James will play second base for Myrtle Beach, replacing the promoted Martin Prado. The Braves might call up another infielder in a few days, although Mike Rozema could also get some playing time there.
Lefty Matt Harrison (8-4, 2.49 in 17 games started, 83 hits allowed in 105 innings, 17 walks, 75 strikeouts) will pitch for the Braves tonight at State Mutual Stadium as they host Kannapolis. Once again, Chipper Jones is expected to play for the Braves as he continues his rehab.
Rome is 8-10 in the second half of the season, three games back of Charleston in the Sally League's Southern Division. They continue their series with Kannapolis Friday when Luis Atilano hits the mound. Charlie Morton will go Saturday, and then on Sunday when Greensboro comes to Rome Chris Vines will be the starting pitcher.
Danville is playing a double-header with Kingsport tonight at Dan Daniel Stadium. Eduardo Rosario picked up the game from yesterday and went two innings and allowed three runs. It's now 4-1 Kingsport in the bottom of the 8th inning.
Jo Jo Reyes continues his rehab from Tommy John surgery and will start in the second game tonight for Danville. Reyes pitched three games (two starts) in the Gulf Coast League and went 0-1 with a 1.69 ERA. He allowed six hits in 5.1 innings of work, 1 walk, and six strikeouts.
GCL Braves lose to Phillies
The GCL Phillies beat the baby Braves this afternoon in Florida 6-2. Yelar Castro gave up four runs in 2.2 innings as the Braves' starter. Steve Russell, also rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, had his best performance so far this season going five innings, allowing two runs, one earned, no walks, and four strikeouts.
Adam Parliament went 2-4 including a two-run home run, his third of the season. Jordan Schafer continued his hot hitting with two hits, including a double. Elvis Andrus went 0-4 and is now hitting .279 this season.
The GCL Braves are now 7-10 on the season.
Bill Shanks has a new book out on baseball scouting and player development called Scout's Honor: The Bravest Way To Build A Winning Team. Bill can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org