The Braves had two important organizational starts on Tuesday. In St. Louis, all eyes were on Dylan Dodd, who was making his MLB debut, and he didn’t disappoint, tossing five innings of one-run ball. If that’s the pitcher the Braves can come to expect moving forward, this rotation looks even more deadly than anticipated once Kyle Wright and Max Fried return from the IL. However, what was going on with the Gwinnett Stripers was equally important, as Mike Soroka made his first start of the season.
After a late start to Spring Training because of a hamstring issue, Soroka is still ramping up his workload to begin April, but he made the most of his pitches, finishing 3.2 innings. He allowed just one earned run, which came off a homer, four hits, and struck out three.
Soroka will need at least a few more starts before he is even considered for the major-league roster. The Braves have no reason to rush him, and that will be even more apparent when Wright and Fried return. With that being said, all signs point to his stuff being even better than it was pre-injury. His velocity on all of his pitches is up, creating even more swing-and-miss in his game.
Michael Soroka's sinker velo was 1.6 mph higher than 2020 and nearly 1 mph higher than 2019. His slider is 2.1 mph up from 2020 and back to 2019 levels, and is missing a ton of bats. Crazy to think he is only 25 and had a 2.79 ERA in 200 IP between 2018 and 2019. pic.twitter.com/y5kgIvC8p7
— Chris Clegg (@RotoClegg) April 5, 2023
The biggest issue for Soroka has and always will be health. His stuff hasn’t taken a step back since tearing his Achilles twice. If anything, it’s improved. At this point, it’s all about ramping up his workload, gaining confidence, and staying healthy. If he can do that over the next couple of months, I fully expect him to be a critical piece to the Braves pitching staff again.
Photo: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire
You must log in to post a comment.