29 May

pitching pipeline

Seems like only yesterday — technically, it was two weeks ago — that Spencer Schwellenbach was making his Double-A debut — and tossing six shutout innings — for the Mississippi Braves at Trustmark Park. Tonight, he’s scheduled to make his big league debut for Atlanta against Washington at Truist Park. The 23-year-old right-hander joins the long, long, long list of pitchers the Braves have pumped through their system, through Pearl, and into the majors over the past 20 years. It’s quite a list. Not all of them have had great success, but many have. It all started with Blaine Boyer, who jumped from the M-Braves to Atlanta in June 2005. He pitched 12 years in the majors, making 447 appearances. Charlie Morton, still pitching for the Braves, has 133 career wins. Mike Minor won 83. Julio Teheran has 81 W’s, Alex Wood 77, Max Fried 67, Matt Harrison 50, Tommy Hanson 49. Craig Kimbrel, one of the best closers of all-time, has 429 saves and 53 wins on his ledger — and still counting. In just the past few years, M-Braves fans have watched the likes of Michael Soroka, Huascar Ynoa, Ian Anderson, Spencer Strider, Bryce Elder, Jared Shuster, Dylan Dodd, Darius Vines and A.J. Smith-Shawver blow through the TeePee and crash The Show. With Strider and Smith-Shawver having hit the injured list this spring, the Braves have a need for starters. Their brass has deemed Schwellenbach, their No. 3 prospect, ready. A second-round pick out of Nebraska in 2021, he was 4-1 with a 1.80 ERA this season — 2-0, 0.00, with 17 strikeouts in 13 innings for the M-Braves. Worth noting: Former Southern Miss star Hurston Waldrep, the No. 2 prospect, may not be far behind; he is 3-4 with a 2.92 in Mississippi.

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