Open Thread, 8/6, Braves vs. the Parc Jarrys
We never hear Julio T. mentioned as a rookie of the year candidate. Pity. He’s been the second best pitcher on one of the best teams in the National League. Since April, Teheran’s ERA is a sparkling 2.45, and that’s over 102-2/3 innings. He’s also walked fewer and struck out more hitters in each successive month this season.
He’s no fluke. Somebody might have explained how a pitcher of his caliber managed to put up a 5-ish ERA in triple-A last season, but I have not heard that explanation. Maybe he was experimenting. Maybe a light flipped on in winter ball. If so, that light was about as powerful as the sun. One thing that’s been particularly impressive for JT this year, in my view, is that he seems able to get outs with different combinations of pitches on different nights. Last time out, he was consistently hitting 93-95 and racking up Ks, whereas he normally uses the 90-92 sinking fastball more. So it appears he has mastered the art of figuring out what’s working on a given night, and using it.
Granted, he threw so many pitches early — notably a 37-pitch second inning — against the Rocks five nights ago, that he only went five innings. But still. Better five innings, one run than 3-2/3 and five runs.
The ability to tailor the repertoire on the fly is a little unusual with young pitchers. And an exceedingly good sign, I’d say.
Another good sign: tonight’s sadnats starter Gio Gonzalez got brutalized his last start, allowing 10 runs at Detroit. But he’s a good pitcher and is likely due a good game. Lately that has not much mattered as the Bravos right now are a resourceful, efficient killing machine. Let’s hope the mayhem continues.
No lineups posted yet as I type. Probably safe to assume it’s the same as last night.
Update: Yep. Same batting order, except of course with Julio T. hitting 9th: Heyward, J. Upton, Freeman, McCann, Johnson, Uggla, BJ, Simmons, Teheran. I guess until Laird returns from the DL, we won’t see Gattis much except when McCann gets a day off.