If I were to ask you who was the most consistent pitcher for the Atlanta Braves down the stretch of September in a winning season, there are not enough numbers for how many times you would have had to guess before you guessed Freddy Garcia. After starting the season with the Baltimore Orioles, Garcia struggled and spent a lot of time back and forth between the minors and the major leagues. The general consensus was that he had lost all that once made him one of the better pitchers in MLB. That consensus was wrong.
Garcia proved once again on Tuesday night in a losing cause that he is just as good as he has ever been. He might not have the juice he once had but as manager Fredi Gonzalez said, he certainly has what it takes to work his way through a line-up. I suspect it helps being able to plan around the pitcher’s spot in the batting order as it does for many starters. Without a doubt he has been the most consistent starter over the last couple of times out and he wasn’t even supposed to be much more than an inning eater.
Thankfully for the Braves he has been much more than that. They squandered his great seven inning start in Washington on Tuesday as well as they squandered the chance they had to beat the Washington Nationals earlier in the day. That doesn’t take away the truth of the fact that Garcia is placing his veteran knowledge well into the talk of who should be on the postseason roster. I wouldn’t necessarily have planned on seeing him on there but who would have guessed he would be the contributor he has been so far? Stranger things have happened.