TOLEDO, OH- The Toledo Mud Hens (35-42) came back from a one-run deficit with eight unanswered runs to crush the Gwinnett Braves (39-39) 12-5 on Thursday night in the finale of the four-game series at Fifth Third Field.
Despite the loss, Gwinnett wins the season series from the Mud Hens, seven games to four.
Toledo ran out to a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the second off of Gwinnett starting pitcher Andrew Albers . An infield single by Bryan Holiday with runners on second and third plated the first run of the game. Juan Perez then drove in two with a triple to right to make it 3-0 and a bloop single to right by Brendan Ryan scored Perez from third for the final run of the inning.
However, the G-Braves came back big in the top of the fourth inning off former Rockdale County High School and Georgia Tech star Buck Farmer. One-out back-to-back doubles by Sean Kazmar Jr. and Kyle Kubitza cut the Mud Hens lead to 4-1 and Anthony Recker dropped in a single to right to move Kubitza to third. A single by Xavier Avery plated Kubitza to make it 4-2, and a single to center by Ozzie Albies brought Recker in to make it a one run game at 4-3. With runners on first and third, Albies stole second and, when Toledo second baseman Omar Infante tried to pick Avery off third, he threw the ball away allowing Avery to cross with the tying run. Rio Ruiz then smacked a two-out single to left, scoring Albies with the go-ahead run as Gwinnett took a 5-4 lead.
However, Toledo would score the next eight runs of the game to take the win. A sacrifice fly by Perez with a man on third in the bottom of the fourth tied the game 5-5. In the bottom of the sixth, the Mud Hens took the lead for good as a triple to right by Michael Almanzar with a runner on first made it 6-5. The lead climbed to 8-5 when the Mud Hens pushed two more across in the bottom of the seventh. Finally, with Maurico Cabrera in to pitch in the bottom of the eighth, the Mud Hens scored four more times, once on an RBI single by Holaday, twice on a two-run double by Ryan and finally on a pinch hit, RBI single by Tyler Collins.
Albers (L, 6-3) went 5.1 innings with eight hits, six earned runs, one walk and four strikeouts to suffer his third loss of the season. David Peterson gave up two runs, one earned, in 1.2 innings with two hits. Cabrera was tagged for four earned runs and four hits in two thirds of an inning, while walking two and striking out one. Enrique Burgos went one third of an inning with one walk and one strikeout.
Farmer tossed 3.2 innings with nine hits, five earned runs, one walk and seven strikeouts. Logan Kensing worked 1.1 innings with one hit. Blaine Hardy (W, 5-2) pitched 2.0 innings with two hits, one walk and one strikeout. Arcenio Leon (H, 4) worked two thirds of an inning with one walk. Kyle Ryan (H, 4) pitched one third of an inning with one strikeout. Edward Mujica tossed 1.0 inning with one hit and two strikeouts.
Offensively, the G-Braves were led by Albies, who was 3-for-5 with a run and an RBI. Carlos Franco was 3-for-4, and Ruiz was 2-for-5 with a double and an RBI. Avery went 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI to up his on-base streak to 14 games.
The Mud Hens were led by Ryan who was 3-for-4 with two runs, two doubles and three RBIs and by Holiday who went 2-for-3 with three runs a double and two RBIs. Perez was 1-for-2 with a run, a triple, a sacrifice fly and three RBIs.
The G-Braves will begin a four game series Friday night in Charlotte against the Knights. Kris Medlen (0-1, 7.58) will start for Gwinnett against Charlotte righty Tyler Danish (1-6, 4.58). First pitch will be at 7:05 p.m. Tony Schiavone has the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM "The Other Side of the River" beginning at 6:35 p.m.
The Gwinnett Braves return to Coolray Field on Tuesday, July 4 to begin a six-game homestand. Game one of a three-game series vs. Norfolk begins at 7:05 p.m. 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.