Rome hitter Luke Waddell put an exclamation point on a red-hot series with a homer and three RBIs in the Braves’ 5-3 win over the Bowling Green Hot Rods on Sunday at Bowling Green Ballpark.

Rome scored five runs over the final four innings to rally back against Bowling Green and take the series 4-2.

Waddell capped off a sizzling week in which he hit six homers and drove in 10 against the Hot Rods.

“He’s probably not only the High-A East Player of the Week, I would imagine he is the Minor League Baseball Player of the Week if not the Major League Player of the Week,” BG manager Jeff Smith said. “That was quite a series. We pitched him a lot of different ways. He hit balls out of the park from line to line. He had a tremendous series. You just have to tip your hat to the young man.”

Looking to bounce back from two straight losses, Bowling Green (69-33) got off to a good start with an RBI single from Evan Edwards in the first and a solo shot from Curtis Mead in the fifth to build a 2-0 lead.

Rome answered with a solo homer from Brett Langhorne in the sixth. One inning later Waddell’s sacrifice fly tied the score 2-2.

The Braves surged ahead in the eighth, on a two-out RBI triple by Cody Milligan, then Waddell put the game away with a two-run homer in the ninth.

Bowling Green got a run in the bottom of the ninth, but was unable to get any closer.

Trey Crumbie took the loss in relief, falling to 0-2 on the season.

Edwards and Mead paced the Hot Rods offense with two hits each.

“I tell you what, (Rome’s) bullpen was outstanding,” Smith said. “Their bullpen was really tough in all six games. We did everything we could. They just shut us down.”


Rome’s series win against the Hot Rods was the first time this season Bowling Green has lost a home series. Bowling Green has lost 13 games at Bowling Green Ballpark this season, six to the Braves.

It was only the second series loss for Bowling Green this season. The Hot Rods lost four of six at Asheville May 25-30. Bowling Green was 11-0-1 in the last 12 series.


Sunday’s game was another close game in the series. Three of the six games were decided by one run with two games decided by two runs. In the sixth game, a 10-5 win by Rome, the Braves pulled away scoring six in the 10th inning.

“If you look at all 36 games we have played against them this season they were all tight games,” Smith said. “We came out on top a lot in one-run games early, but it is two even baseball teams for the most part. It’s just good baseball games. They are a good, quality team and you are always going to play them pretty close.”


Rome reliever Trey Shirley nearly recorded an immaculate inning in the eighth, striking out the first two batters on six pitchers and going to an 0-2 count on the third batter. The ninth pitch was ruled a ball however, with the Rome bullpen clearly upset with the call.

Shirley would come back with a strike on his next pitching, striking out the side on 10 pitches.


The Hot Rods will stay at home, opening a six-game series with the Hickory Crawdads at 6:35 p.m. Tuesday.

Neither team has announced a starting pitcher for the series opener.{&end}

– Follow Hot Rods reporter Micheal Compton on Twitter @mcompton428 or visit

Recommended for you