August 21, 2019–5:46 p.m.
The Rome Braves opened their homestand in grand style on Tuesday evening, blowing the doors off Kannapolis in a 14-4 romp at State Mutual Stadium
Rome enjoyed season-highs for both runs and hits while winning their third straight game overall and keeping pace with Asheville in the division race. Five different Braves hitters had multi-hit efforts, led by a four-hit night for Shea Langeliers and a two-hit game for Bryce Ball which included his first home run.
The Braves got the scoring started with two tallies in the 2nd inning. Brendan Venter singled in a run and Carlos Paraguate had a sacrifice fly. After Kannapolis rallied to tie the game 2-2 in the 3rdRome struck for three more runs on back-to-back doubles by Jeremy Fernandez and Venter.
Leading the Intimidators 6-3 in the 6th inning the Rome offense would again stir with runners in scoring position. Consecutive two-out singles from Justin Dean and Michael Harris made it 8-3 in favor of the Braves and a four-run outburst in the 7th put the game out of reach. Ball would open the 7th inning with a long solo homer out to right. It was his first long-ball with Rome after ripping 13 homers earlier this summer as a Danville Braves in the Appalachian League. The rally continued with a two-run double from Ricardo Rodriguez and another RBI hit by Dean.
The carnage got bad enough that Kannapolis turned to third baseman Ramon Beltre in the 8th inning to begin pitching. He would record the final out in the frame.
Langeliers was 4-5 and scored four runs. Dean went 3-6 with two RBI. Venter was 3-4 with a double, two RBI and was hit by a pitch. Fernandez was 2-4 with a double, two RBI and a walk. Ball went 2-4 with a homer and a walk. Rodriguez was 1-4 with a double, three RBI and was hit by a pitch.
All nine starting position players had at least one hit and Rome was a sensational 8-17 with runners in scoring position.
Lefty Tanner Lawson earned the win for his work out of the bullpen, holding the Intimidators to one run in 3 innings. He surrendered four hits while striking out three batters. He did not issue a walk.
Rome and Kannapolis continue their three-game series on Wednesday afternoon. First pitch of Game 2 is scheduled for 1 pm from State Mutual Stadium. Rome will start RHP Ricky DeVito (0-1, 4.91) while Kannapolis is expected to start RHP Jason Bilous (5-8, 3.55).
Rome Braves (29-28, 59-67) 14 R 18 H 1 E
Kannapolis Intimidators (27-30, 55-70) 4 R 12 H 4 E
W: Tanner Lawson (4-6)
L: Davis Martin (7-9)