Odds and ends as Braves prepare to face Cards
Braves bullpen coach Eddie Perez picked up the phone in the home dugout this morning to let a group of pitchers know that it was time to leave the bullpen to participate in a drill on the main field. As Perez relayed the message, it was apparent that he was surprised to hear the voice on the other end.
When he hung up the phone, Perez smiled and said, “That was Bobby Cox.”
With the Cardinals sending Lance Lynn to the mound to start this afternoon’s game against the Braves, I guess it’s important to point out that Cox heard the message clearly and made sure to send the right pitchers to the mound for that portion of the morning workout.
Barring any confusion, Lynn will be opposed by Randall Delgado, who is scheduled to pitch the first five innings of this afternoon’s game. Julio Teheran is scheduled to pitch the final four innings. It still seems too early to confidently know which of these two pitchers will begin the year in the rotation’s fifth spot.
Both pitched effectively before struggling in their fourth inning of work during their last start. But it’s safe to say both have made the necessary strides since allowing nerves, Mother Nature and a potent Tigers lineup to serve them some humble pie during their exhibition season opener.
Like the Braves will continue to evaluate the battle between Teheran and Delgado, they will do the same with the battle between Andrelton Simmons and Tyler Pastornicky. Simmons has obviously been the more impressive during the first two weeks of the exhibition season. But it will be interesting to see what he shows with the bat now that starting pitchers going deeper and the games are starting to at least better resemble a normal game.
Braves general manager Frank Wren talked about the shortstop battled this morning Here is a tidbit from that interview
“I think you just have to not be quick to make decisions based on a small sample size or a week or two of games,” Wren said. “Sometimes you see things the first two weeks and you’re saying, ‘Wow.’ Then another 10 days later, you’re going, ‘oh OK, that’s what we expected.’
Check Braves.com later for more thoughts about the battle between Pastornicky and Simmons.