COLUMBUS, OH – Ryan Rohlinger delivered a one-out RBI single in the bottom of the 11th inning off of Gwinnett reliever Andrew Russell to lead the Columbus Clippers (8-11) to a 5-4 win over the Gwinnett Braves (12-8) in game three of the four game series Thursday night at Huntington Park in Columbus, Ohio.
With the score at 4-4, Russell entered in the bottom of the 11th, replacing Mark Lamm and quickly got into trouble. He gave up a leadoff single to Roberto Perez, who would steal second with one out. Jose Ramirez was intentionally walked to set up a possible double play, but Rohlinger spoiled that by smacking a 3-2 pitch to left, scoring Perez from third.
The back-and-forth game saw Atlanta's Gavin Floyd make his fifth minor league rehab start of the season and fourth for Gwinnett. Floyd was solid, working 5.1 innings for Gwinnett. He gave up five hits and two earned runs. He walked three and struck out one while throwing 86 pitches, 54 for were strikes.
After a scoreless first inning, the G-Braves gave Floyd an early lead in the second. Joey Terdoslavich shot a one-out double to right off of Columbus starter Tyler Cloyd. A ground out to second by Todd Cunningham moved Terdoslavich to third, and a long double to left-center by Mark Hamilton plated Terdoslavich for a 1-0 Gwinnett lead.
The Clippers quickly tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the second when Matt Carson hit a two-out solo homer to right off of Floyd.
But the G-Braves struck right back in the top of the third. Back-to-back two out singles by Phil Gosselin and Tommy La Stella opened the door for Ernesto Mejia. The G-Braves' designated hitter responded with a double off the wall in left, scoring Gosselin, while La Stella was thrown out at the plate trying to score from third. However, the RBI double staked the G-Braves with a 2-1 lead.
Columbus answered, tying the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the third. With two outs, Rohlinger doubled to left off of Floyd and scored on a single to center by Nyjer Morgan.
In the top of the fourth, the G-Braves regained the lead. Terdoslavich led off the inning with a single to left and then moved to third on a single to right by Hamilton. Edward Salcedo plated Terdoslavich with a sac fly to left for a 3-2 Gwinnett lead. Steve Lerud followed with a single to right, moving Hamilton to third. With runners on the corners, Jose Constanza upped the Gwinnett lead to 4-2 with a single to right, scoring Hamilton.
The Braves 4-2 lead held until the Clippers began their rally in the bottom of the seven. With Pedro Beato now pitching for the G-Braves, Perez drew a lead-off walk and made it all the way around to third when Audy Ciriaco grounded out to shallow third. An infield single by Ramirez scored Perez from third, cutting the Gwinnett lead to 4-3.
After tossing four scoreless innings on Wednesday night, the bullpen was roughed up for three runs on Thursday night. Beato went 1.2 innings with two hits, one earned run and one walk. Lamm pitched 3.0 innings with four hits, one earned run, two walks and three strikeouts. Russell (L, 0-1) was tagged with the loss in 0.1 of an inning with two hits, one earned run, one walk and one strikeout.
Cloyd went 4.2 innings for Columbus. He gave up 11 hits, four earned runs, allowed one walk and struck out three. Mike Zagurski went 2.1 scoreless innings with two strikeouts. Frank Herrmann, pitching for the first time since 2012, worked 1.0 inning with two walks. Nick Hagadone went 2.0 scoreless with one hit, one walk and five strikeouts. Austin Adams (W, 1-1) worked a scoreless top of the 11th for the win. He struck out one.
The G-Braves offense was led by Constanza (2-for-6, 1 RBI), La Stella (2-for-5), Terdoslavich (2-2, 2 runs) and Hamilton (2-4, 1 RBI). Mejia was 1-for-5 with an RBI to extend his hitting streak to 12 games.
The G-Braves and Clippers conclude the four game series Friday night in Columbus with a 7:15 p.m. first pitch. RHP Zach Stewart (1-0, 5.06) will start for Gwinnett. The Clippers will start RHP Josh Tomlin (0-1, 4.00).