By: TeamOOS 4/20/19
Twitter: @TeamOutOfSight IG: outofsightsports_
The Atlanta Braves are a young, exciting, offensive team that consists of young stars such as Ronald Acuna, Dansby Swanson, Ozzie Albies, and older veterans like Freeman, Markakis and fan favorite Brian McCann who returned to Atlanta this season. Although Atlanta has multiple players who can consistently hit the ball and put runs on the board, their bullpen is 25th in baseball in ERA. The last couple of games have become disasters at the end. Tuesday, the Atlanta Braves relievers allowed 7 earned runs in 3 innings against the Diamondbacks and adding injury to insult, the Braves lost “to-be” closer Adrodys Vizcaino to a season ending shoulder surgery. Tuesday night, after Max Fried exited the game in the sixth, the Braves used 6 pitchers. The primary offenders were Sobotka and Biddle who teamed up to blow the 6-2 lead Fried handed off to them, making the score 6-6. Luke Jackson and Shane Carle stopped the bleeding and managed to keep the game tied at 6. After Carle exited, Minter came into the game for the hold, but he got rocked by the Diamondbacks who rallied off 3 runs in the 9th before recent arrival Jacob Webb came in to close the game.
As we all knew, the bullpen is going to be the weak link for the Bravos all season. It’s doubtful that bullpen help is on the way since ownership knew in the off season that the relief corps was going to struggle and still resisted adding any new arms. Rumors are coming out from The Athletic that Craig Kimbrel, who remains unsigned but has lowered his contract asking price, would be a great fit to return to the back of Atlanta’s bullpen. Not even going to mention Johnny Venters, he has been a straight disappointment this year. Darren O’Day isn’t coming back anytime soon either.
The way the Braves bullpen has performed is certainly not surprising and definitely not pretty. A glance at the members of the bullpen and their stats will show you all you need to know, and until Brian Snitker can get his full squad back from all the injuries, the bullpen is going to be a work in progress.
The Braves have a chance to be a very good team this year. The team’s offense is stacked. The starting pitching has been better. Max Fried and Toussaint’s performances have been encouraging. Folty is coming back after one more rehab start this weekend. The Braves fate will fall in the hands of its bullpen, and you know what they say, “defense wins championships”