Behind Three Home Runs, M-Braves Beat Biloxi 10-6 to Open Series
BILOXI, MS – The Mississippi Braves continued their 12-game road trip in Biloxi on Tuesday night and got homers from Drew Lugbauer, Shea Langeliers, and Wendell Rijo to beat the Shuckers, 10-6. The win places the M-Braves above .500 for the second time this season at 16-15.
Trailing 1-0 in the top of the second inning, the Braves bats exploded for four runs with two outs. CJ Alexander opened the inning with a single – but after a groundout and fly-out – Greyson Jenista singled home Alexander to tie the game. The next batter, Lugbauer, sent the eighth pitch of his at-bat with Biloxi starter Noah Zavolas (L, 2-2) off the scoreboard in right field to make it 3-1. The homer was Lugbauer’s third on the season, two of which have come at MGM Park in Biloxi. Jalen Miller added the third-straight hit with two outs, and then Braden Shewmake brought in Miller to up the advantage to 4-1.
Hayden Deal surrendered his second run in the bottom of the third inning and pitched with traffic in each of his 4.0 innings. His biggest pitch came on a bases-loaded strikeout of Payton Henry to end the bottom of the fourth inning. Overall, Deal gave up six hits, walked three, and struck out three in the no-decision.
The M-Braves put up another crooked number in the fifth inning to extend the lead. Justin Dean drew a Zavolas walk to open the frame, and then Langeliers belted a 427-foot homer to left-center, pushing the lead to 6-3. The homer was the 23-year-old’s fifth in six games and league-best eighth on the season. Langeliers finished 1-for-5 with the homer and three RBI. Two batters later, Rijo smashed a solo home run off a light pole down the left-field line for his second home run of the season to make it 7-2. Rijo was 1-for-4 and extended his team-best hitting streak to eight games.
The next big inning for the M-Braves came in the sixth inning, in which they were aided by two of the three Biloxi errors. Miller doubled after a Lugbauer walk, and Shewmake walked to load the bases. Langeliers hit into a fielder’s choice to score the first run, and Alexander followed with a sacrifice fly to make it 9-2. The third run came across when Rijo reached on an error scoring Shewmake. Miller was the only M-Brave with multiple hits on Tuesday, going 2-for-3 and upped his hitting streak to five games.
Just activated from the Development List on Tuesday afternoon, reliever Kurt Hoekstra (W, 2-0) was credited with the win after a scoreless fifth inning, walking one and striking out one.
In the eighth inning, the Shuckers grabbed one run against reliever Will Latcham in the sixth inning and three off Sean McLaughlin in the eighth. Brewers top prospect Brice Turang hit a wind-aided two-run home run, and Alexander Palma hit a solo shot, bringing the score to 10-6.
Josh Graham slammed the door in the ninth inning with a 1-2-3 inning and a strikeout to finish off the second-straight win.
The M-Braves have now hit 31 home runs on the season, 14 of which have come at MGM Park in Biloxi. The Braves rank third in the Double-A South. Going back to the last game played at MGM Park on Sunday, May 16, the M-Braves have hit eight home runs and scored 20 runs.
The M-Braves continue the road trip on Wednesday night with game two of the series in Biloxi. RHP Odalvi Javier (2-0, 1.31) will start for the Braves against LHP Leo Crawford (1-2, 9.33) for Biloxi. The first pitch is 6:35 pm with coverage on 103.9 WYAB, FirstPitch App, and mississippibraves.com.
The M-Braves will return to Trustmark Park on June 15 to begin a 12-game homestand against the Birmingham Barons and Tennessee Smokies. The homestand will feature two great giveaways. On Friday, June 18, the first 1,000 fans will get a Mississippi Braves beach towel, showcasing a panoramic photo of Trustmark Park, presented by Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi. The first 1,500 fans on Friday, June 25, will get a Freddie Freeman replica jersey presented by Morgan & Morgan!
For tickets or more information about the M-Braves, visit mississippibraves.com or call 888-BRAVES4.
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