Spencer Strider once again looks like the best pitcher in baseball

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There was a brief moment over a few weeks where everyone realized Spencer Strider was human. Braves fans were introduced to this young man last season, and for the first 13 months of his major-league career, he very rarely ran into trouble.

That began to change in the middle of May. The few chinks in the armor revealed themselves. His mechanics got a little sloppy, his control was slightly more erratic, and then came the dip in velocity, which had some people in Braves Country spewing the absolutely wildest nonsense. I would be lying if I said I didn’t have the slightest bit of concern, but it was more related to potential injury. As long as Strider is healthy, he was always going to figure things out, and figure it out he has over his last two starts.

Last week in Philadelphia was Spencer Strider’s get-right game. He struck out nine over six innings and allowed just one run. Strider did give up eight hits, but he stepped up in the biggest moments, limiting the damage and sending the Phillies home frustrated. Most importantly, however, his velocity was back up well into the high-90s.

The success continued last night versus the Twins. Although, the Braves ace was much more crisp, allowing just three hits over seven innings while striking out ten. The only mistake he made came in the second inning, when Joey Gallo sent one over the center field wall for a solo shot. But for most of the night, Twins batters looked hopeless like this.

Strider’s average fastball velocity sat at 97.6 MPH, which is tied for the highest it has been all season. However, his struggles did not solely stem from a dip in his velocity. This was a young pitcher going through some legitimate growing pains, the first of his career, and he’s made it through it. Spencer Strider will be a much better pitcher in the long run from this learning experience, and that’s far more important than any single game result.

Photo: Randy Litzinger/Icon Sportswire

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