Williams Perez to Start Wednesday; Stults to the Bullpen

Posted on May 17 2015 - 12:00pm by Harrison Coburn

Just a couple weeks ago Williams Perez was an under the radar pitcher tearing it up for Gwinnett, and I gave him prospect of the Week honors. Now he has made his way into the Braves starting rotation. Manager Fredi Gonzalez announced that Perez would start on Wednesday against the Tampa Rays, and that Eric Stults was being moved to the bullpen. Williams Perez was lights out as a starter for AAA Gwinnett, posting a 1.33 ERA in 5 starts. This is no fluke, as Perez pitched very well in AA Mississippi in the 2014 season, being named the Braves’ MILB.com organizational all-star. Unfortunately, Perez has given up 4 earned runs in the 2.1 innings he has pitched out of the bullpen since being promoted to the big leagues. In his defense, these runs came in his MLB Debut and he hasn’t had experience working out of the bullpen. Eric Stults just never panned out the way the Braves hoped. From August through October of last season, Stults finished his season strong, posting a 2.76 ERA after an atrocious first half. The Braves decided to take a waiver on Stults, and he really impressed with his 1.88 ERA in spring training. The team opted to go with Stults over Wandy Rodriguez for a rotation spot after they traded for Trevor Cahill. Oh, what could have been. Rodriguez has put up a 3.86 ERA for the Rangers this season and has looked far better than Stults or Cahill, who have both been moved to the bullpen. Stults has been very unimpressive for the Braves, as evidenced by his 1-4 record and 5.36 ERA. Fredi Gonzalez continues to keep his starters on a short leash, but I don’t think moving them to the bullpen does any good. I understand the situation with Cahill, as he is owed a good sum of money, but I’d rather call up a reliever from AAA than have Stults waste a bullpen spot. We have two washed up starters occupying spots in a bullpen that really needs to find its groove. I think it’s just a matter of time until both of these guys are moved to clear way for relievers. Let’s hope it’s sooner than later.

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