We knew it was coming, but that doesn’t make the news of Jason Heyward’s trade any easier to stomach.
John Hart did well, considering. Jay Hey will be a free agent in one year; the Braves will have Shelby Miller under team control for four years. Tyrell Jenkins hasn’t pitched up to his potential in the minors but he has impressed in the Arizona Fall League, where his fastball was consistently touching 95 MPH.
The 22-year-old righthander, the 50th overall pick in the 2010 draft, bloomed in the desert. With a spot on the 40-man roster at stake, Jenkins put an exclamation point on his season with a 2.22 ERA and 28 strikeouts in 24 1/3 innings (six starts) for Peoria.
Four years after the Cardinals drafted him out of high school as a raw, Baylor-bound athlete, Jenkins looks less like potential and more like a pitcher than ever before. He has simplified his mechanics. His delivery can be repeated. His fastball still has zip, but also movement. His changeup plays. He’s working on a hard curve. And, most of all, his shoulder is finally healthy.
Jay Hey will be missed, of course, but the Braves have the makings of an outstanding rotation, with four accomplished young starters all under the age of 26.
Still … I’m a little depressed.