The Gwinnett Braves (17-14) erased a 2-0 deficit with five runs over the sixth and seventh innings in a 5-3 win over the Toledo Mud Hens (16-14) on Wednesday night at Coolray Field.
Xavier Avery tied the game with a two-run home run in the sixth, and RBI singles by Sean Kazmar Jr., David Freitas and Johan Camargo gave Gwinnett a three-run lead in the seventh.
Toledo took a 1-0 lead against G-Braves' starter Aaron Blair in the third inning as Alex Presley singled, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by JaCoby Jones and scored on an RBI single by Efren Navarro. Steven Moya raised the Mud Hens' lead to 2-0 in the sixth with a solo home run off Blair to deep right-center field.
Blair turned in his second quality start of the season in a no-decision. He held Toledo to two runs on six hits over 6.0 innings, walked two and struck out five.
The G-Braves evened the score against Mud Hens' starter Buck Farmer in the bottom of the sixth as Freitas ripped a leadoff single to center and Avery lifted an opposite-field two-run homer to left. Avery's 394-foot blast was his second of the season.
Still facing Farmer in the seventh, Rio Ruiz led off with a double to left-center and scored the go-ahead run on Kazmar's single to right-center. Following a single by Kyle Kubitza to put runners on the corners, Freitas blooped a single to center scoring Kazmar. Camargo capped the inning with a two-out single up the middle, scoring Kubitza.
Caleb Dirks (W, 2-1) held the 5-2 lead over 2.0 scoreless innings, striking out three. David Peterson (S, 4) allowed three hits in the ninth, including Moya's second solo homer of the game, but stranded the tying runs on first and third base.
Farmer (L, 0-2), a native of Conyers, GA, suffered the loss for Toledo with five runs on 10 hits over 6.0 innings. He walked one and struck out seven. Relievers Daniel Stumpf and Bruce Rondon each tossed scoreless innings.
Avery went 1-for-4 with the homer and two RBIs to lead the G-Braves. Ruiz went 3-for-4 with a double, and Camargo and Kazmar each finished 2-for-4 with an RBI. Mel Rojas Jr. went 1-for-4 with a double to extend his hitting streak to eight games.
Moya went 2-for-4 with two solo homers and two RBIs for the Mud Hens.
The G-Braves and Mud Hens complete the four-game series on Thursday morning at Coolray Field, first pitch is set for 10:35 a.m. Left-hander Sean Newcomb (1-2, 2.97) is scheduled to start for Gwinnett, while Toledo will counter with right-hander William Cuevas (1-2, 5.57). Tony Schiavone has the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM The Other Side of the River beginning at 10:05 a.m.
Thursday is "Education Day" as students from schools in Gwinnett County and beyond come to Coolray Field for a special 10:35 a.m. start time. It's also "Triple Play Thursday," when fans can purchase four (4) Infield Box tickets, four (4) hot dogs and four (4) sodas for just $40, courtesy of Coolray Heating & Cooling. For tickets, call 678-277-0340 or visit GwinnettBraves.com/tickets.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.