Macon Braves at Augusta GreenJackets (Red Sox)
WHERE: Lake Olmstead Stadium
THE SERIES: Four games - Today, 7:15 p.m.; Friday, 7:15 p.m.; Saturday, 7:15 p.m.; Sunday, 2:15 p.m.
RECORDS: Braves (13-13), Jackets (16-10)
Today:/LHP Chris Waters (1-1, 5.26)/Seung Song (2-0, 1.20)
Friday:/RHP Kenny Nelson (3-1, 3.77)/RHP Matt Thompson (3-1, 1.80)
Saturday:/RHP Adam Wainright (4-2, 3.82)/LHP Luis Perez (3-1, 3.13)
Sunday:/RHP Brett Evert (1-0, 0.86)/LHP Richard Rundles (2-2, 2.05)
SCOUTING THE GREENJACKETS
Entering Wednesday's game vs. Columbus, the Jackets had won seven of their past nine games and were 4-2 on the current 11-game homestand. ... 2B Raul Nieves carried a six-game hitting streak into Wednesday's game and was batting .400 (8-for-20) in his previous five games. ... In his first four games with the Jackets, 3B Tony Blanco was batting .286 with one RBI. ... Leadoff man Antron Seiber is third in the SAL with 13 stolen bases in 16 attempts. ... RHP Matt Thompson is 2-0 with a 0.64 ERA and 11 strikeouts. ... Reliever Daniel Giese has not allowed an earned run or a walk, while striking out nine in his past four outings (5 IP). ... RF Julio Guerrero had just three hits in his past 32 at-bats before getting Wednesday off. C/DH Bryan Barnowski batted .294 in five games through Tuesday. ... Jackets continue to lead the SAL with a 2.44 ERA and are last in the league with a .207 batting average.
SCOUTING THE BRAVES
Macon dropped the first two of a three-game home series vs. Savannah entering the series finale Wednesday. ... The Braves split a season-opening four-game series at home vs. the Jackets on April 5-8. ... RHP Brett Evert, Atlanta's seventh-round pick in 1999, was third in the SAL with a 0.86 ERA entering his start vs. Savannah on Wednesday. ... RHP Adam Wainright, the 29th overall pick in last year's draft out of St. Simons Island, Ga., is tied for second in the league with 45 strikeouts. Wainright was rated by Baseball America as Atlanta's seventh-best prospect. ... C Raymond Serrano, a non-drafted free agent signed in 1999, leads the club with a .341 average. ... SS Kelly Johnson, another 2000 first-round pick, is tied for the SAL lead with seven home runs to go with a .284 average, 13 RBI and .593 slugging percentage. ... Manager Randy Ingle, is a three-time minor-league manager of the year in the Braves system.
NOTES AND QUOTES
Smoltz rehab in Augusta?
The Atlanta Braves are expected to send former Cy Young Award winner John Smoltz to the minors Saturday for a rehab start. While there was talk that Smoltz could be sent to Augusta to make a start for Macon, chances are he will head to Class AA Greenville instead.
Smoltz, who has been sidelined with elbow tendinitis in his attempt to comeback from Tommy John surgery, faced the GreenJackets in a rehab start in Macon three years ago.
The Braves made several roster moves with their Macon club earlier this week, promoting relief pitcher Buddy Hernandez to high Class A Myrtle Beach while sending infielder Ricardo Rodriguez and catcher Jose Salas to extended spring training.
Second baseman Pat Manning rejoined the club from Myrtle Beach, S.C., while catcher Miguel Bernard and pitcher Tony Pierce were promoted from extended spring training.
Bernard, a 20-year-old Dominican, was rated as the top catching prospect in the Braves organization by Baseball America.
Red Sox farm director Kent Qualls has been in town since Monday to get his first look at the GreenJackets this season. ... Jackets owner Mike Savit also arrived Tuesday for his first visit to Augusta this season. ... LHP Mauricio Lara is eligible to come off the disabled list Sunday and could be ready to make his next scheduled start Monday. ... After five games in the No. 3 hole, Rick Asadoorian has been back in the two hole the past three games. Manager Mike Boulanger said he wanted to take some pressure of the slumping 1999 first-round pick, and that the move was not necessarily dictated by the Red Sox, who initially told him they wanted Asadoorian to bat second.
JACKETS ON DECK
At Columbus (April 7-9); vs. Savannah Sand Gnats (May 11-14); vs. Wilmington Waves (May 15-18); at Lexington (May 19-22).
Today - Thirsty Thursday (16 ounce beers for $1); Saturday - Seat Cushion Giveaway (first 500 fans); Sunday - Family Four Pack (four tickets, hot dogs, chips, drinks, two souvenir programs, a logo ball and a mini bat) for only $29.
$8 box, $7 reserved, $6 general admission, $5 senior citizens/active military w/I.D. and children 4-12, $3 children 3-and-under.
NOTE: Statistics do not include Wednesday's games.
- Compiled by Rob Mueller