RECAP: Bethancourt Breaks Record, Homers in M-Braves Win
With a hit in the 1st, Bethancourt breaks Willie Cabrera’s On-Base Streak Record at 39 games
By: Kyle Tait, Mississippi Braves
Pensacola, FL – It’s been a long chase, but Christian Bethancourt wasted no time in making Mississippi Braves history on Tuesday night.
On the first pitch he saw in the first inning, Bethancourt ripped a hopper through the left side of the infield, extending his on-base streak to a record 39 games, breaking Willie Cabrera’s 2009 M-Braves record. He also homered en route to a Braves 5-3 win over the Pensacola Blue Wahoos at Pensacola Bayfront Stadium. The streak dates back to June 13, exactly two months ago to the day.
The Braves followed Bethancourt’s lead in the first to strike early. With two on, Tommy La Stella clubbed a two-run double to center to give the Braves an early advantage over starter Jon Moscot. Two batters later, Edward Salcedo singled to score La Stella to make it 3-0.
But Moscot (1-1) settled in. Over his five innings, he allowed just one more run, an RBI single to Christian Marrero in the fifth. He finished the day with four runs on nine hits, striking out three and walking four.
Aaron Northcraft (7-8) pitched well to counter, outdueling Moscot with just three runs on six hits over six innings. The win was his fourth straight victorious decision. He hasn’t lost in more than a month, dating all the way back to July 8 against Birmingham.
Pensacola pushed across their first run in the fourth. Center fielder Ryan LaMarre tripled with one out, setting up a Corey Wimberley ground to second. Jaime Pedroza booted the ball and LaMarre scored, pulling it to a 3-1 score.
Then in the fifth, trailing 4-1, Josh Fellhauer led off with a double, moved to third on a groundout, and Mike Costanzo walked to put runners on the corners. Tucker Barnhart grounded out to first to score Fellhauer from third, then Travis Mattair singled to plate Costanzo, pulling the score to 4-3 Braves.
In the sixth, Bethancourt got one back with his career high 11th home run, a majestic, towering home run into the Pensacola Bay off reliever Chris Manno. It was Bethancourt’s third home run in two games as he continues his best power season to-date.
The Wahoos loaded the bases in the ninth off reliever Ryne Harper, but he struck out Brandon Short and got Costanzo to fly out to center to end the threat and the game.
With Jacksonville’s 4-1 win over Birmingham, the Braves remain 2.5 games back in second place in the South race with 19 games remaining in the second half.
Mississippi will try to strengthen its grip on second and gain ground in the race on Wednesday night in game two with the Blue Wahoos, with first pitch slated for 7:00 PM. The Braves give the ball to right-hander Gus Schlosser (6-4, 2.37), countering Wahoos righty Daniel Renken (*6-8, 3.69). Listen live to Kyle Tait on the call beginning at 6:30 PM CT with the “Countdown to First Pitch” on 103.9 WYAB and online at MississippiBraves.com.
Mississippi Braves (28-23; 66-55) 5 R 13 H 1 E
Pensacola Blue Wahoos (25-25; 50-69) 3 R 8 H 1 E
W – Northcraft (7-8)
L – Moscot (1-1)
S – Harper (8)
Time – 2:59
Attendance – 4,781
Kyle Tait is in his third season as the radio voice of the Mississippi Braves, double-A affiliate of the Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter: @MBravesRadio