The Atlanta Braves made a surprising decision on Saturday evening, as they announced left-handed pitcher, Sean Newcomb, will get the ball versus the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday night in Game 3. Braves manager, Brian Snitker, had originally declared right-hander, Kevin Gausman, would start the game for Atlanta, but it seems as though the potential 2018 National League manager of the year had second thoughts.
After Newcomb’s near no-hitter against the Dodgers in July and his two scoreless relief innings in Game 1, I don’t blame the Braves whatsoever for making the switch.
As Atlanta faces elimination on Sunday night versus Los Angeles, the Braves’ 25-year-old southpaw has the opportunity to become a postseason hero. After struggling throughout the second half of 2018, Newcomb pitched himself out of a spot in the Braves playoff rotation; however, thanks to his last two outings against the Dodgers, the kid from Massachusetts has been thrown back into the spotlight. This time, the lights will be brighter than ever.
If we’re being honest, this is the kind of game kids dream about growing up: your team is facing elimination, as they call your number to help get the win and keep the season alive. The greatest players in the game thrive in these moments, but more importantly for Atlanta, stars are forged out of the fire that comes from this kind of postseason experience.
The Braves may be on the brink of elimination, but if we’ve learned one thing about this 2018 ballclub, it’s that they’ll scratch and claw until the bitter end. Game on, Los Angeles.