Tyler Pastornicky Making His Case For Atlanta Braves Bench Job
As Tyler Pastornicky started the spring knowing that his work with the Atlanta Braves might not be until the last week or two of Spring Training, it’s probably good to guess that he had his doubts of making the Opening Day roster in just a few days. However, with his brief performance, he’s really showing the team that he wants to be in Milwaukee for the opening series. If he continues to play this way, he’ll make it impossible for the team to send him anywhere other than where the Braves go.
On Wednesday, Pastornicky got a chance to start the game at second base and took that opportunity to play some of his best baseball. In his five games since joining the big league club, he has went 5-12 and has four RBI. Against the Miami Marlins, Pastornicky went 3-for-4 (three singles) and walked once, plating three of his four RBI on the spring. With that bat, it’s easy to see that he has come to the team ready to show everyone that he is ready to play at the highest level in 2014.
On top of the bat that he is showing the team, he has played some darn good defense too. Just the other day, he fielded a bunt and after a bare-handed stop, in full extension, he threw the runner out by a step and a half. Along with his 11 other chances at second base, he has been very solid, taking every ball with ease seemingly. When he came to the major leagues, the Braves knew that Pastornicky was a tier below Andrelton Simmons with the glove, yet he has seemingly improved on that every season and could possibly be the fill in if Dan Uggla goes down with injury or another slumping season.
With him performing at such a high level at this point of Spring Training, it’ll be hard for Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez to send Pastornicky back down to the minor leagues. With him and Ramiro Pena as the utility infielders, I believe that Gonzalez should have no problem with putting in either player if they continue to play at this level.