Atlanta Braves starter Brandon Beachy, who had a setback just before his scheduled return from Tommy John surgery last month, began what he hopes will be a three-game rehab assignment on Thursday, when he tossed three innings of two-run, three-hit ball for Triple-A Gwinnett, throwing a total of 45 pitches in the process.
“It’s something you can’t really put a date on it, you just have to see, because it could flare back up at any time,” Beachy told Eric Single of MLB.com on Thursday. “Something new could happen, it’s just the nature of it, but hopefully if all goes well, I can get my pitch count up and start commanding some breaking balls a little better. Hopefully I’ll be able to compete by then.”
During Thursday’s start, in which Beachy was opposed by former Braves starter Jair Jurrjens, the 26-year-old right-hander walked the first batter he faced and ultimately allowed two runs on two hits in the opening frame before settling down over his final two innings of work.
“It was nice to get it going,” Beachy said. “I didn’t have the cleanest of starts, but I felt pretty good. I think I threw some quality pitches. It’s definitely an improvement. I felt so much better.”
Beachy isn’t the only player Atlanta hopes to have back soon, as potential battery mate Evan Gattis, the club’s rookie catcher who has been out since June 18 with a right oblique strain and has recently begun taking swings and practicing catching duties again, will serve as Gwinnett’s designated hitter on Friday against Durham, the Class AAA affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays.
There is a chance the 26-year-old could return for the Braves’ first series after the All-Star break against the Chicago White Sox, but that all depends on how his stint in the minors goes.
“We’ll go day by day,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “He may only need three games and he’ll take the All-Star break off or maybe he says, ‘You know what, I feel good, but my timing’s not there.’ We have places where he can play other than on Tuesday, get him some more games.”
Braves Country, get ready because it appears two of your young studs are on the mend.