All I have to say is A.J. Burnett.
The guy is a freaking legend. A folk hero. If the Pirates manage to turn it around this season it’s in large part due to the leadership of A.J. Burnett. He is that big of an acquisition in my opinion.
The Braves are in town for four games. The Braves are on fire right now. 12-2. 9-1 in their last ten. Leading the league in homers. Leading the league in ERA by almost a full run. 1.77 team ERA. For reference the Red Sox are second with 2.66, the Pirates are 11th with 3.61.
This is a massive test. A huge measuring stick.
The Braves should change their name too. Dopes.
Jeff Locke had a better start in his last outing. Nothing great, just better. I don’t think there is anything wrong with continuing to trot the guy out there. Let him work. Let him adjust. He is battling, as long as he isn’t getting the Pirates bombed and giving them no chance to win, let’s see what we have.
We talk a ton about the youth movement but sometimes I wonder if, as a fanbase, we have the stomach for it. No, that’s not a question. I didn’t accidentally put a period there. It’s a statement. I don’t think we do. With youth comes growing pains. Better to see what he can do now than to not know in a bigger situation.
Oh yes, there will be depth.
Needs to start striking some guys out. Needs to cut down on the hits. If he can’t. He’s not going to be here much longer.
Sucks that he will be facing such an offensive juggernaut, especially with his big league homer problems, but it’ll be a great test for him.
It’s an all youth movement day today. Julio Teheran will take the mound for the Braves. He has been the weakest link in the Braves rotation.
The 22 year old righty is a highly touted prospect, not just a dude that was brought up to take the last spot in the rotation.
Here are his Baseball America rankings.
Pre-2010: Rated #51 Prospect
Pre-2011: Rated #5 Prospect
Pre-2012: Rated #5 Prospect
Pre-2013: Rated #44 Prospect
It’s hard to see how a guy that is 6’2″ and a very generous 175 lbs is going to hold up over 162 games, but we’ll see.
Mechanical changes led to a poor season last year, decreased velocity, less break on his pitches, general frustration. His fastball is apparently back, but his breaking stuff is still a work in progress.
This might be the Pirates best opportunity to steal some thunder from the Braves.
|vs RHB as RHP||9||77||69||0||0||2||5||14||2.80||.203||.253||.290||.543|
|vs LHB as RHP||9||86||77||4||1||5||8||9||1.13||.338||.400||.610||1.010|
Might as well pack the lefties in today.
First Pitch: 7:05 PM EST
Where To Watch: Root Sports, MLB.TV, SPSO