Atlanta Braves lefty Paul Maholm made a rehab start Saturday night for Rome, and the Braves stole seven bases to run past the Charleston RiverDogs 6-2 at State Mutual Stadium in Rome, GA and even the series at one game apiece. The loss snapped Charleston's five game win streak.
With the loss, the RiverDogs fall to 28-27 in the second half and 67-56 overall. Rome advances to 27-28 in the second half and 63-61 overall with the victory.
In his first game since July 20, Maholm threw 5.2 innings, allowed four hits, one run, walked nobody, and fanned six. He earned the win to go to 1-0. It was his first appearance in the Minor Leagues since 2005 with Triple-A Indianapolis.
Rome struck first scoring a run on a Kyle Wren double, a stolen base, and an RBI ground out by Jose Peraza in the bottom of the first.
Charleston tied it in the top of the second thanks to a ball misplayed by Rome right fielder Felix Marte that landed for a double by Ericson Leonora, and a two out RBI single by Jackson Valera. Leonora finished 2-4 with two doubles and scored both runs for the RiverDogs.
In the bottom of the second inning, Rome got runners at second and third base with nobody out, but ending up stranding the bases loaded without scoring a run to keep the game tied at 1-1.
Jose Peraza led off the bottom of the third for the Braves with a single then stole second and third and scored on a line drive single by Edison Sanchez to make it 2-1 Rome.
After wasting a leadoff triple in the fourth inning, Rome got back at it in the fifth scoring twice to push their lead to 4-1.
Charleston's bats went quiet and did not collect a hit from the fifth through eighth innings. Trailing 6-1 entering the ninth, back-to-back doubles by Ericson Leonora and Reymond Nunez plated a run to make it 6-2 Braves. That was as close as the RiverDogs would get with Nunez left stranded at third when the game ended.
Nunez continued his hot hitting with a 2-4 performance, a double, and RBI.
Eric Wooten started for Charleston and the lefty gave up four runs on eight hits, walked one, hit two batters, and struckout four in five innings of work. He got the loss to fall to 1-2. Adam Smith gave up a run on a hit in one inning of relief, and then Tyler Webb allowed one run to score on three hits and a walk in his two frames thrown.
Zach Jadofsky took over for Maholm and tossed 1.1 scoreless, hitless innings of relief with a couple strikeouts. Jeremy Fitzgerald got the final six outs for Rome fanning three, gave up two hits and one run.
Game three of this four game series is Sunday night at State Mutual Stadium in Rome. Charleston will send out RHP Derek Varnadore (1-5, 3.30 ERA) for a spot start, and the Braves will counter with RHP Frank Lafreniere (5-12, 5.70 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 5pm on Sunday. Fans can listen to the game live locally on ESPN Radio 910AM or online at www.riverdogs.com.