G-Braves and Clippers Split DoubleheaderMay 2, 2012 - International League (IL) Gwinnett Braves
The two teams were tied 1-1 with the Braves batting in the top of the fourth with two on and two out when heavy rains in the Columbus area forced a suspension of play on Tuesday. When play resumed on Wednesday, the Braves quickly climbed on top.
The first batter when play resumed, Gwinnett's J.C. Boscan ripped a double down the right-field line off of Columbus left-hander David Huff scoring Stefan Gartrell from second and giving the Braves a 2-1 advantage. Luis Durango followed with a single to score both Josh Wilson and Boscan to raise the lead to 4-1. Jose Constanza then singled to left allowing Durango, who had moved to second on the throw, to score giving Gwinnett a commanding 5-1 lead.
The Clippers got a run back in the bottom of the fourth when Matt LaPorta hit a solo homer off of G-Braves' reliever Buddy Carlyle to cut the lead to 5-2. The Clippers then made it a 5-3 game with a run in the bottom of the seventh as Luke Carlin singled in a run off of reliever Cory Gearrin.
However, the G-Braves scored twice in the top of the ninth to extend the lead. Durango walked, stole second and moved to third on a single by Constanza, then tagged and scored on a sacrifice fly to center by Drew Sutton. Columbus centerfielder Ezequiel Carrera dropped the ball hit by Sutton, allowing Constanza to go to third and letting Sutton reach safely at first. Constanza would later score on a groundout by Gartrell, putting the G-Braves up 7-3.
The Clippers would plate a run in the bottom of the ninth against Gwinnett reliever Anthony Varvaro, but would not score again as the Braves moved to 18-7 on the season and 4-0 on the road trip.
In game two, bad fielding got the best of Gwinnett.
After failing to score off of Columbus starter Zach McAllister in the top of the first, the G-Braves allowed two runs to score in the bottom half. It would prove to be a deficit the Braves could not overcome.
Carrera led off the bottom of the first with a walk from starter Eric Junge. He took to second on a single by Cord Phelps and third on a fly-out to right by Ryan Spilborghs. An error by G-Braves' third baseman Joey Terdoslavich on a ball hit by LaPorta allowed Carrera to score the first run of the game and moved Phelps all the way to third. Phelps then scored on a fielder's choice by Russ Canzler and the Clippers were up 2-0 after one inning.
Columbus added a second unearned run off of Junge in the bottom of the third. With one on and Phelps at first, Terdoslavich made two errors on one play on a ground ball hit by Spilborghs. The play put runners on the corners with one out. LaPorta then singled to left, scoring Phelps from third to give the Clippers a 3-0 lead.
Gwinnett cut into the deficit thanks to Gartrell, who blasted his second home run of the series in the fourth. His solo shot off McAllister was his third of the season and reduced the Clippers' lead to 3-1.
The G-Braves rallied in the top of the seventh to make it close. Wilson led off with a double off of reliever Cody Allen, then moved to third on a groundout by Greg Paiml. Durango hit a grounder that Columbus shortstop Gregorio Petit misplayed, scoring Wilson from third to make it a 3-2 game. Sutton followed with a single to put the tying and go-ahead runners on base, forcing a Columbus pitching change. Right-hander Jeremy Accardo came on and walked Jordan Parraz to load the bases with one out, but then got Gartrell to line into a game-ending double play at second.
In game one, Carlyle (W, 2-0) got the win in relief of starter Julio Teheran. Carlyle went 2.2 innings, giving up one run on two hits with two strikeouts. Teheran pitched the first part of the suspended game on Tuesday and allowed one run and two hits in three innings of work, striking out four. Gearrin gave up one run in 2.1 innings, while Varvaro yielded up a run on three hits in his one inning of work.
In game two, Junge (L, 3-2) pitched the complete game loss. He worked six innings with only one of his three runs credited as earned. Junge limited the Clippers to five hits and three walks while striking out two.
At the plate, Gartrell went 5-for-9 in the two games with a double, two home runs, three runs scored and three RBI. Durango also tallied three RBI on 1-for-7 hitting.
Accardo had a unique two games. He was the loser in game one (L, 0-1) going one inning with one hit, two earned runs and two strikeouts. He also got the save (S, 4) in game two working two-thirds of an inning with one walk.
McAllister (W, 3-1) picked up the win for Columbus in game two going five innings with four hits, one earned run, two walks and six strikeouts.
For the Clippers, LaPorta was 3-for-7 in the two games with a home run and three RBI.
The Gwinnett Braves (18-8) take on the Columbus Clippers (14-12) in game three of the four-game series at Huntington Park on Thursday night, first pitch scheduled for 6:35 PM. Left-hander Yohan Flande (1-0, 0.90) will get the start for the G-Braves while the Clippers counter with right-hander Kevin Slowey (1-2, 4.85). Listen to the broadcast on WDUN AM 550 and FM 102.9 in Gainesville, Georgia with Tony Schiavone calling the play-by-play.
Tickets for all Gwinnett Braves home games are on sale now at the Coolray Field Box Office. Call (678) 277-0340 or visit gwinnettbraves.com for more information.
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