Teheran and Delgado could benefit from Sunday’s game
The Braves recorded one hit in Saturday’s exhibition season opener and then saw two of their top pitching prospects get beat up in Sunday’s 18-3 loss to the Tigers. On the bright side, they dropped just one game behind the Cardinals, who open their Grapefruit League season this afternoon.
Teams obviously never want a young pitcher surrender six home runs within a span of 11 batters. But the Braves could benefit from the embarrassment Julio Teheran experienced in Lakeland, Fla. on Sunday.
In fact, I’d say Teheran will benefit more from the yesterday’s experience than he would have had he simply thrown a ho-hum two scoreless innings. It’s not necessarily a bad thing for a top prospect to consume some humble pie, especially during the first week of March when results are secondary.
Randall Delgado was also humbled Sunday when he issued two walks and surrendered two extra-base hits (double and a homer) in a four-run first inning. As he exited, it seemed like the storyline would be “has Teheran now passed Delgado as the favorite to win the rotation’s fifth spot.” About 30 minutes later, some of you were shouting, “I told you (Kris) Medlen is better a option than both of those heralded prospects.”
Obviously if Teheran and Delgado both continue to struggle this month, Medlen will be ready to begin the season as a starter. But for now, you should continue to assume one of these young hurlers will be in the rotation in April.
Teheran and Delgado both returned to the stadium this morning in good spirits and ready to prepare for their next outings on Friday. There’s no doubt both need to show better command the next time out. But the Braves were just as interested in seeing how they handled this situation. So far, they seemed pleased with their reactions.
Jair Jurrjens will start this afternoon’s game against the Astros. Cory Gearrin, Todd Redmond, Luis Avilan and Erik Cordier are also scheduled to pitch.
Craig Kimbrel, Jonny Venters and Eric O’Flaherty are all scheduled to make their exhibition season debuts during Tuesday’s game against the Nationals.
MONDAY’S LINEUP @Astros