Photo: Chris Roughgarden, Gwinnett Braves Joey Terdoslavich hit a walk-off homer Saturday night as the Gwinnett Braves overcame another rough bullpen outing to beat Syracuse at Coolray Field.
LAWRENCEVILLE -- Joey Terdoslavich was the only predictable part.
In a game with blown leads from both sides, it was the G-Braves' best batter who capped the final comeback with a two-run game-winning home run in the bottom of the ninth, lifting the G-Braves to a 9-8 win over Syracuse. The win is the fifth straight for the G-Braves.
"I'm just glad it ended the way it did," manager Randy Ready said. "We battled back, it was a good win tonight."
The game-winner was the second homer of the night for Terdoslavich and came on the first pitch he saw from former G-Braves pitcher Michael Broadway. It was his 18th homer of the season, tying him with Ernesto Mejia for the team lead. He finished the game 3-for-4 with five RBIs.
"I was (sitting) dead-red fastball," Terdoslavich said. "Todd (Cunningham) had an unbelievable at-bat with a tough count. That was huge. That was as big as my home run.
"I just knew (Broadway) threw hard."
But for a guy hitting .321, hitting from his power side and expecting a fastball, the homer is the most believable event of a strange back-and-forth night.
Gwinnett starter Omar Poveda, the team's most consistent starter, allowed a season-high five earned runs in the first five innings and Gwinnett trailed 5-1 in the bottom of the fifth. He allowed runs in the third, fourth and fifth innings capped by Zach Walters's 17th homer of the season, a solo shot to right field in the fifth.
"He lacked command, but he battled through it," Ready said. "That's Poveda. He kept us in the game without his best stuff."
Already at 99 pitches, but still in the game because of a short bench, Poveda came to the plate to lead off the bottom of the fifth and delivered his first hit since Aug. 18. The single sparked a six-run rally that included Terdoslavich's three-run home run, a two-RBI double by Jose Yepez and another RBI double from Luis Nunez.
"We just kept the line moving," manager Randy Ready said.
The G-Braves held the 7-5 lead into the ninth inning and handed the ball to Cory Rasmus for his first outing since pitching three one-run innings against the New York Mets on Tuesday. He entered a perfect 7-for-7 in save situations with the G-Braves. But the perfect streak ended. Rasmus walked the lead-off batter, gave up a single to Chris Rahl and then Walters planted his 18th home run into right field to give Syracuse a 8-7 lead.
"It was uncharacteristic of him to walk the leadoff guy," Ready said of Rasmus.
The homer led to the bottom of the ninth dramatics and Terdoslavich's first two-homer night since April 2011 when he did it twice with High-A Lynchburg. His teammates met him at home plate and the biggest crowd of the season celebrated as well. Terdoslavich was still covered in celebratory dirt when he got to the clubhouse.
"They treated me right when I got home."
Note: Rehabbing Atlanta Braves relief pitcher Luis Ayala threw a scoreless eighth inning, striking out two and giving up a lead-off double to Gainesville native Micah Owings.