The Gwinnett Braves will conclude their tour-game series with the Indianapolis Indians on Sunday at 5:05 p.m. ET. The game will be at Coolray Field and aired on CSS.
The Braves will be featuring some young stars that include outfielder Todd Cunningham and first baseman Ernesto Mejia. Both players could see some time with the Atlanta Braves when rosters expand in September.
Cunningham has improved every single month since the beginning of the season, which is exciting for G-Braves fans. In his last 10 games, he’s hitting just under .300 with a .297 batting average. Cunningham has never been a player that has shown power potential, but instead, uses his on-base skills to wreak havoc on the basepaths.
Mejia, 27, participated in the Triple-A All-Star Game and the home run derby. He has passed prospect status, but could be given a chance with Atlanta in September. Mejia has been on a power binge in his last 10 games, hitting six home runs. Mejia hasn’t had a high average this year, but has more than made up for it with his power.
The Indians most prominent offensive prospect is their catcher, Tony Sanchez. He stalled last year in the minor leagues, but the Pirates organization has been impressed with the strides he’s made this year. His defense remains his biggest flaw, but the organization believes that he’ll get better with seasoning.
The Indians as a whole have been an offensive juggernaut this year. They do most of their damage with home runs, but they do everything well offensively.
The Braves will send their most consistent starter, Omar Poveda, to complete the four-game series Sunday. Poveda is 5-5 with a 3.32 ERA in 19 games for Gwinnett this year. Poveda has a fastball that sits in the low-90s, but his best pitch is his changeup, which induces a lot of ground balls for him. Poveda has not been known for his strikeouts, but does have 85 in 116 innings this year. He is looking to recover from his last three starts, in which his ERA is 5.86.
The Indians will send 28-year-old Graham Godfrey to the mound Sunday. Godfrey was acquired on May 31, from the Boston Red Sox in exchange for a player to be named later. Godfrey has struggled since arriving to Indianapolis, and particularly in his past 34 innings. In those innings, he has compiled an ERA over 5.82 with a 2-3 record, while allowing eight home runs.
WHO TO WATCH FOR
Ernesto Mejia, 1B - Mejia has been a catalyst for the Gwinnett Braves’ offense this year. He leads the team in home runs (24), RBI (66), and is second with 48 runs. Mejia was selected to the Triple-A All Star Game, Wednesday, and showed off his 26-home-run power in the home run derby.