The Gwinnett Braves won the season opener 8-6 over the Charlotte Knights at Coolray Field in Gwinnett. Clint Sammons and Wes Timmons each drove in two runs for the Braves, while Freddie Freeman added a RBI single.
Gwinnett starter James Parr allowed five runs in five innings. Jonny Venters relieved Parr and allowed one run in two innings to get the win. Venters struck out three, but more importantly did not walk a batter. Venters will eventually be stretched out to make some starts.
Cory Gearrin struck out the side in his Triple-A debut, while Craig Kimbrel pitched a scoreless ninth inning to get his first save of the season.
Chris Resop makes the start for Gwinnett Friday against Knights’ right-hander Carlos Torres.
Cody Johnson hit a three-run home run for the Braves, but it was not enough as Tennessee beat Mississippi 4-3 in the season opener at Trustmark Park.
Mike Minor started for the Braves and allowed four runs in five innings. Minor walked two and struck out six. The Smokies scored solo runs in the second and third innings, with two more in the fifth.
Johnson’s home run was the only production for the Braves, who had only five hits on the night. The first seven Braves hitters in the game struck out, and Smokies’ pitchers registered 14 strikeouts on the night.
Behind a solid start from Randall Delgado and good work from the bullpen, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans won its season opener Thursday, beating the Wilmington Blue Rocks 4-1.
Delgado allowed one run on three hits in five innings. He did not issue a walk and struck out five. Matt Crim pitched two scoreless innings in relief, followed by scoreless frames from Jaye Chapman and Benny Pruneda. Crim was credited with the victory.
Gerry Rodriguez had a two-run home run for the Pelicans. Cole Miles and Jesus Sucre added runs batted in. Adam Milligan was the only Myrtle Beach player with two hits.
Pelicans' right-hander Zeke Spruill starts Friday in game two of the series against left-hander Chris Dwyer. Game time is 7:05 at BB&T Coastal Field.
The Rome Braves were rained out in Kannapolis Thursday. They will play a doubleheader starting at 6:00 pm Friday night. Julio Teheran will start the opener, followed by left-hander Brett Oberholtzer in game two.
Bill Shanks hosts The Bill Shanks Show on
WFSM Fox Sports 1670 in Macon, Georgia and The Atlanta Baseball Show. Shanks writes a weekly column for The Macon Telegraph. Email Bill at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/billshanks.