With the game tied at two in the sixth inning, Durham busted out for seven runs and hung on for the 9-3 thrashing of the Richmond Braves Friday night in North Carolina.
Brian O'Connor (3-4) took the loss for the Braves, as he allowed seven runs on 13 hits in five innings of work. Two of the seven runs in the fifth came off Scott Mullen. Tyler Yates did continue his good work with a scoreless inning in the eighth. Yates' ERA is 2.25.
Kelly Johnson continued to mash the ball in his rehab stint, going 3-for-4 with a double and two RBIs. Johnson is now hitting .423 for Richmond, after hitting .474 in his five games in Rome.
Richmond is now 20-28 on the season. They head back to Richmond to open up an eight-game homestand Saturday night. The first place Charlotte Knights will be the opponent in the first game. Ricardo Rodriguez is the scheduled starter for the Braves.
Want to know a good way to snap a four-game losing streak? Score seven runs in the first inning. That's what the Mississippi Braves did Friday night and beat the Birmingham Barons 8-2.
Four of the seven runs came on a grand slam by Mike Rosamond, his fifth of the season. Gregor Blanco (4), Barbaro Canizares (10), and Matt Esquivel (28) also had RBI hits in that exciting first inning. Josh Arteaga hit a solo home run in the third inning.
The Braves got a solid start from Paul Bush (3-3), who has been moved to the starting rotation. Bush allowed only two runs on five hits in six innings, with one walk and six strikeouts. Ryan Basner pitched two scoreless innings, followed by a scoreless frame from Zach Schreiber, who continues his good pitching with a 1.64 ERA.
Mississippi is now 18-30 on the season. They close out the series with Birmingham Saturday night with Matt Wright on the hill.
Myrtle Beach and Wilmington were rained out Friday night. They'll play a doubleheader Saturday starting at 5:30 at Coastal Federal Field. James Parr and Kelvin Villa are scheduled to start for the Pelicans, who are still 20-25 on the season.
Rome had a late rally, scoring four runs in the ninth inning, but it was not enough as the Savannah Sand Gnats beat the Braves 7-5 Friday night at State Mutual Stadium.
The game was scoreless until the top of the fifth, when Savannah scored a run of Rome starter Beau Jones. Nick Tisone relieved Jones and allowed two runs in the sixth and one run in the seventh, although only one run was earned. The Sand Gnats added three runs in the eighth inning off Rudy Quinonez.
Offensively for Rome Elvis Andus, Jamie Romak, and Derrick Arnold all had two hits. Andrus's average is now up to .270. Romak is slowly coming around; his average is right below the Mendoza Line and should be above it soon. Andrus (24), Isaiah Ka'aihue (37), Jordan Schafer (20), and Ovando Suero (12) all had RBI's for Rome.
The loss snapped a three-game losing streak for the Braves, who are now 33-14 on the season. Rome starts a four-game homestand with the Columbus Catfish Saturday at 7:00. Jairo Cuevas is scheduled to start for the Braves.
Bill Shanks is the author of Scout's Honor: The Bravest Way To Build A Winning Team, a look inside the Braves‘ traditional scouting and player development philosophies. Email Bill at firstname.lastname@example.org.