Braves in market for lefty reliever
The Atlanta Braves enjoyed a significant advantage in recent seasons, deploying not one but two premier left-handed relievers. Now Jonny Venters has undergone Tommy John surgery and Eric O’Flaherty is likely to follow.
Huge blows, for sure. But not necessarily crushing.
General manager Frank Wren said Saturday that the trade market has yet to develop, but rest assured, the Braves will actively search for another left-handed specialist. Mike Dunn, whom the Braves sent to Miami in the Dan Uggla trade in November 2010, would be ideal.
For now, the Braves still have one quality lefty, Luis Avilan, who has pitched 6-2/3 consecutive scoreless innings. Right-hander Jordan Walden, currently out with right shoulder inflammation, throws a “split change” that neutralizes left-handed hitters. Righty Cory Rasmus, the younger brother of Colby, was recently called up after displaying a good changeup and putting up terrific numbers at Triple-A.
Atlanta Braves – PlayerWatch
RHP Brandon Beachy, coming back from Tommy John surgery, had his scheduled rehab start with Triple-A Gwinnett rained out Sunday and threw a limited simulated game indoors instead. He was slated to pitch three innings after working two innings during an extended spring training game in Florida last Tuesday. Beachy had surgery last June 21 and hopes to return to the Braves during the second part of June. He is slated to pitch four innings for Gwinnett on Friday against Toledo.
Atlanta Braves Bullpen Still Strong with Loss of Eric O’Flaherty
The Atlanta Braves bullpen is riddled with injuries, but if they keep up their current pace, there is nothing to worry about.
Jonny Venters and Eric O’Flaherty are gone for the year with Tommy John surgery. Luis Ayala has been on the disabled list since late April with anxiety disorder. Cristhian Martinez was moved to the DL with shoulder problems to make room for Ayala on the roster. Jordan Walden” href=”http://www.sportsmedia101.com/atlantabraves/tag/jordan-walden/” rel=”tag nofollow”>Jordan Walden, though he should be back soon, has his own shoulder issues.
But still, the Atlanta bullpen leads Major Leagues with a 2.65 ERA, 16 points lower than the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Dish Network customers may lose 47 Braves games on Fox Sports South and SportsSouth
Dish Network has declined to pay Fox Sports regional networks for 47 Atlanta Braves games this year so metro Atlanta Dish customers will lose access to games starting this Friday against the Detroit Tigers – unless circumstances change.
FSS added 45 Braves games in February from Peachtree TV and is now the exclusive local provider of 150 Braves games. (Other games are set aside for ESPN, Fox national, TBS and MLB Network.) The games air on either Fox Sports South or SportsSouth.
Dish customers will still be able to view the other 80 or so games remaining in the season, according to FSS.