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HR slugger Gartrell returns to G-Braves

A former crowd favorite is returning to Coolray Field and he won't be in a visiting uniform.

Stefan Gartrell, released by Charlotte just before the season opener against Gwinnett, was re-signed by Atlanta on Wednesday and will report to the G-Braves for the start of a four-game home series against Toledo beginning tonight.

Gartrell slugged 25 homers in 2011 to set a Gwinnett record and hit 20 last year for the G-Braves. But he signed with the Chicago White Sox as a minor league free agent after last season and didn't make it out of spring training this year before being released.

The 29-year-old outfielder eventually ended up in the Mexican League and hit .346 in six games for Campache before being signed by Atlanta for Gwinnett.

The G-Braves snapped a 10-game home losing streak in the second game of a doubleheader against Louisville on Monday and are 5-5 since a 14-game overall losing streak. But they are still last in the International League's South Division with a 17-30 record.

Toledo's record is even worse, though. The Mud Hens, Detroit's Class AAA team, are last in the North Division with a 15-32 record and have won just four of 22 road games.

The four-game series runs through Sunday, with Brandon Beachy slated to make his first minor league rehab start on Friday.

Beachy was scheduled to pitch last Sunday against Louisville. But the game was rained out and he threw a simulated game indoors at Coolray Field that day instead to keep on schedule.

If all goes well in his minor league rehab, Beachy hopes to be back with Atlanta by the second half of June -- a year after his Tommy John surgery.

Left-hander Daniel Rodriguez, 2-3 with a 5.77 ERA, is scheduled to start tonight's series opener for Gwinnett against Toledo lefty Ramon Garcia, who is 1-4 with a 5.20 ERA.

G-Braves outfield Jose Constanza has an International League-best 18-game hitting streak. He paced the IL with a 22-game streak last year and won the batting title with a .314 average.