5 Reasons Why A Returning Brandon Beachy Will Help Atlanta Braves’ Rotation
5 Reasons Why Brandon Beachy Will Boost Atlanta Braves
It has been about a month and a half since Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Brandon Beachy felt soreness in his surgically-repaired right elbow just days before his anticipated return from the Tommy John surgery he underwent last June.
After several weeks of rest, Beachy returned to the mound for Triple-A Gwinnett during the second week of July, and he has since pitched three more times.
Following a bullpen session over the weekend, the 26-year-old right-hander will start the opener of a four-game series when the Braves welcome the Colorado Rockies to Atlanta on Monday.
Beachy replaces Tim Hudson -- who will miss the remainder of the season after breaking his right ankle in Wednesday's 8-2 win over the New York Mets -- in Atlanta's rotation. And if he is able to regain the ace status that he displayed in the early part of the 2012 season, he'll help lessen the sting of losing one of the club's most beloved players, something he also felt.
"I was inside, just went over and checked my phone, and I had a couple of messages saying, 'Hey, did you see what happened to Huddy?'" Beachy told Eric Single of MLB.com on Saturday. "I found the video shortly after and it made me sick to my stomach. I felt terrible."
As for Beachy himself, he's feeling pretty good heading into his long-awaited return, having improved in every start over the past month.
Here's a look at 5 reasons why a returning Beachy will help the Braves' rotation.
He's a Legitimate Ace
Before being forced to miss the final three and a half months of the 2012 season, Beachy was one of the best starters in MLB and the clear ace of Atlanta's pitching staff, holding the lowest ERA in the majors at 2.00.
He's a Fresh Arm
Given that he hasn't pitched in a major league game in over a year and has totaled just 40 innings during his minor league rehab starts, getting Beachy back is like acquiring a top-of-the-line starter just before the trade deadline.
He's a Healthy Pitcher
With the aforementioned season-ending injury to Tim Hudson and the recent ailments suffered by Paul Maholm, Beachy's return gives the Braves a much-needed healthy hurler.
He's on a Hot Streak
Beachy has steadily improved over his last several starts at Triple-A, walking fewer batters while pitching more innings and lowering his ERA in the process.
He's a Good Guy
As I said earlier, the loss of Hudson is big, but Beachy is more than just a workhorse as well. He's also a quality guy to have in the Braves' clubhouse.