July 11, 2019–7:14 a.m.
Rome overcame an early two-run deficit and a rain delay to beat Charleston 4-3 on Wednesday afternoon, setting the stage for a series rubber game Thursday in the finale at Joseph P. Riley Jr. Ballpark.
With thunderstorms washing over the area late this morning the game was delayed an hour. Coming off arguably his best start as a pro, Rome hurler LHP Gabriel Noguera was again solid for the Braves on Wednesday. He surrendered two early runs in the 2nd inning but settled down to give the offense a chance to catch up after a slow start.
Trailing Charleston 2-0 in the 5th the Rome bats got their only rally of the day, striking for four runs against RiverDogs starter RHP Jhony Brito. Outfielder Jose Bermudez ripped a bases-loaded triple down the right field line, clearing the bags and giving Rome a 3-2 lead. Justin Dean followed with a sacrifice fly into right, scoring Bermudez and making it 4-2 in favor of the Braves. The pitching staff made the lead stand up.
Noguera allowed a run without a hit in the Bottom of the 5th then departed after 6 innings of work. Rome relievers RHP Luis Mora and LHP Jake Higginbotham would do the rest. Mora went 1.1 innings and left with the tying run in scoring position in the 8th. Higginbotham stranded the runner with two strikeouts and then enjoyed an efficient 1-2-3 9th inning to seal the win. The five out performance gave Higginbotham his 3rd save of the year.
Bermudez led the offense on the day, going 2-3 with a triple, three RBI and a run scored. Griffin Benson was 1-3 with a walk. Greg Cullen was 1-4 with a run scored and Ricardo Rodriguez was 1-3 with a run scored. Noguera threw 6 innings, allowing three runs on five hits. He struck out five and walked three.
Rome and Charleston conclude their three-game series on Thursday evening at Joseph P. Riley Jr. Ballpark. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 pm. Rome will start RHP Jose Olague (7-6, 3.28) while Charleston will start RHP Luis Medina (1-7, 8.38). Olague threw a 9 inning complete game in his most recent start and did not allow an earned run.
Rome Braves (11-9, 41-48): 4 R 5 H 3 E
Charleston RiverDogs (9-11, 46-44): 3 R 5 H 0 E
W: Gabriel Noguera (3-4)
L: Jhony Brito (3-2)
S: Jake Higginbotham (3)
Time: 2:24 (:54 delay)