It seems like a lot of people are overlooking the Atlanta Braves because of the recent success of a stacked Philadelphia Phillies team and the recent big-name acquisitions that the New York Mets made.
Of course, this is not a bad thing to happen to the Braves. If teams want to overlook them, let them.
But I’ve watched this team for more than 20 years now and I see potential in this version of the Braves.
I found this post interesting, with the blogger saying Kris Medlen is one of the most underrated players on a team that is underrated itself. Now, Medlen was not a name I’d immediately pick as the most underrated. I think we will see great seasons from Martin Prado and Yunel Escobar.
So, even I overlooked Medlen.
Medlen has shown that he he had the ability to adapt to major league hitters. He had 32.1 innings thrown in the first half of the season and 35.1 innings thrown in the second half. The numbers are quite different and show improvement.
First Half – 5.85 ERA, 1.61 WHIP, 33 K, 32 H, 20 BB, 4 HR allowed, 21 ER allowed
Second Half – 2.80 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 39 K, 33 H, 10 BB, 1 HR allowed, 11 ER allowed
Medlen is a solid pitcher for the Braves bullpen that does have some injury risks. Heck, I am not even sure new closer Billy Wagner can stay healthy all year. He is one player at a position with which the Braves desperately need to have some solid success.
But there is someone else who hasn’t hit the majors yet that we all have overlooked until today. His name is Craig Kimbrel–and Billy Wagner says here that this kid has better stuff than a lot of the closers currently playing in the majors.
“He’s got a lot more going for him than I did when I was coming up,” Wagner said. “I didn’t have a breaking ball; it was 95-99 percent fastballs. He’s got a really good breaking ball. And he’s got a good head on his shoulders.
“Hell, I’d take him right now.”
Hell, the Braves just might take him this summer.