May 4, 2011; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves tomahawk girl throws out a tee shirt to the fans from the top of the dugout during the game against the Milwaukee Brewers in the seventh inning of game two of a doubleheader at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

2013 Projections: Position #1 PART 3


The next starting pitcher in my projected rotation is a guy who has pitched at the MLB level for three years and is only entering his 25 year old season.  In September of 2012 he displayed reasons not to question why the Atlanta Braves selected him 7th in the 2009 draft.   With only given up three earned runs during the last month of the season, the Braves hope that success will carry over to 2013.

The opening day starting rotation will look differently then last seasons; Tommy Hanson has been traded, Jair Jurrjens was let go, Brandon Beachy is recovering from surgery, Randall Delgado was traded last week and Tim Hudson, last spring training, was recovering from back surgery.  Mike Minor, believe it or not, is the only returning pitcher to the Braves opening day starting rotation.

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Minor (36) pitches the ball against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at AT

Going back to 2006, when Minor was in high school, he had 188 strikeouts in only 86 innings while having a .08 ERA.  Then, in college at Vanderbilt he thrived as the team’s ace and strikeout king.  In Minor’s short stint in the minors (2009-2011) he developed into a pro strike out pitcher earning an average of 10 K/9 during that period.

In 2012, Minor went 11-10 with a 4.12 ERA and 1.154 WHIP.  He had 145 strikeouts in 179 innings.  He had the lowest run support per game, except for Beachy, at 4.4 runs.  Mike did see the ball fly over the fence on occasion as he had a 1.3 HR/9 ratio giving up 26 for the year.

Minor is a strikeout pitcher who will give up the long ball.  With the lineup the Braves have assembled for 2013, run support shouldn’t be a problem.  Minor should continue to develop into a solid middle rotation pitcher who will help the Braves for years to come.

 

Mike Minor

Year Age IP GS W L ERA WHIP K/9 BB/9 HR/9
2011 23 82.2 15 5 3 4.14 1.488 8.4 3.3 0.8
2012 24 179.1 30 11 10 4.12 1.154 7.3 2.8 1.3
2013 25 188 31 13 9 4.09 1.183 7.9 2.9 1.2

 

 

Julio Teheran

http://tomahawktake.com/2013/01/30/2013-early-projections-position-1-part-2/

Paul Maholm

http://tomahawktake.com/2013/01/29/2013-early-projections-position-1-part-1/

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  • Lee Trocinski

    I’d like to point out that you have Maholm’s projected ERA .2 runs lower than Minor’s. Seems odd to have your #5 with a lower ERA than your #3…

    • Jeff Schafer

      As a former pitcher, I’d expect you to realize that ERA doesn’t judge a pitchers true performance.

      Right now stat wise, Minor doesn’t look like a #3 starting pitcher but for what the Braves have on opening day, he seems most suited for the job.

      • Lee Trocinski

        I’ve had this discussion with Fred before, but I don’t assign skills to positions and slots to a rotation. I want pitchers who allow the fewest runs, no matter what their profile is. Minor has more potential, but pitchers on the same team have basically the same baseline for performance. So if you expect Maholm to allow fewer runs, I would think he would be in a higher slot.

        • Jeff Schafer

          Sure, I think we can all agree that we’d like a pitcher who gives up the fewest amount of runs, fewest amount of hits, fewest amount of walks, fewest amount of hrs and 27 strikeouts per game.

          • Lee Trocinski

            Basically, I’m asking for your definition of a #3 starter, since you say Minor looks like one more than Maholm.

          • Jeff Schafer

            Can you give a pitcher a definition? I would say an attribute of a #3 starting pitcher would be a strikeout pitch. Minor has the ability to strikeout opponents, Maholm hopes for the ball to get hit on the ground.

          • Lee Trocinski

            While I agree Maholm is not going to strike out many, give him some credit for getting the groundballs, not just hoping for them. Also, Huddy can’t be a #3 because of his lack of a K pitch, yet he’s a #2 “workhorse” guy?

            I’m not attacking you, as these ideas of slot stereotypes have been around for years. I’m just showing how silly they can be at times.

          • Jeff Schafer

            Maholm was a great pickup at the trade deadline last season for the Braves. Only giving up Vizcaino and another prospect to acquire Reed Johnson and Maholm seemed to be a reasonable trade for Wren. I actually like having him in our starting rotation for the 2013 season and your right, getting those groundballs are a lot better then hr’s. But I guess i’m not as high on him as you are, plus I don’t see the Braves picking up his contact at the end of the season.

  • fireboss

    I like Minor as 3 starter and have more faith in his upside than you seem to. I don’t think his ERA will be that high (3.8 or so ) and I expect Maholm to help him a lot just by being another lefty starter on the roster. I’d prefer Glavine adopt him and do a mind meld but that probably violates some MLB policy or other and Maholm will be around him every day.

    • Lee Trocinski

      Minor should be studying Cole Hamels, as those two are almost identical as far as stuff and release point goes. Being in the division, he’d give Minor good scouting reports on three of the other teams in the East.

    • Lee Trocinski

      Minor should be studying Cole Hamels, as those two are almost identical as far as stuff and release point goes. Being in the division, he’d give Minor good scouting reports on three of the other teams in the East.

      • fireboss

        I don’t want him to study Maholm or emulate him, but it will begood for him to have a lefty starter to talk to. Now if you can arrange Hamels coming to the Braves I’ll be happy for him to be that guy.

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