Hurston Waldrep continues hot stretch with best start of the season

Hurston Waldrep Braves hat AJ Smith-Shawver

The Braves’ top arms on the farm continue to make noise. Owen Murphy turned in another gem earlier in the week, striking out 11 over 6.1 scoreless innings. He looks to be on the cusp of a promotion to AA, where he could join his former teammate, Spencer Schwellenbach, who was just promoted to Mississippi. Perhaps that happens when Hurston Waldrep, who tossed his best game of the season last night, is inevitably promoted to AAA Gwinnett.

The 2023 first-round pick started off the season about as poorly as possible. He gave up seven earned runs on 11 hits over just 2.2 innings in his first start and followed it up with another stinker in his second outing, surrendering three earned runs on four hits and four walks in 4.1 innings.

However, since then, Hurston Waldrep has regained his form and looks like a top 100 prospect. Entering last night, he had not given up more than one earned run in his last four starts, going at least five innings in each. But yesterday was by far the best start of the 22-year-old’s season. He made it through eight innings, allowing just one earned run on six hits with eight strikeouts.

On the season, Waldrep’s ERA is now down to 3.32. There have been bumps in the road, but adversity can oftentimes be a good thing for a young prospect. Hurston Waldrep was so unhittable in his first taste of professional baseball last season that the expectations had become unrealistic. This is a pitcher that was pitching against SEC hitters this time last year. There was always going to be a learning curve. What’s important is how he handles that adversity. To this point, he appears to be handling it pretty well, and it may not be long before he joins Braves top prospect AJ Smith-Shawver in Gwinnett.

Photo: Larry Radloff/Icon Sportswire

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