Sunday Links

Aaron Blair, Matt Wisler, and Lucas Sims all optioned to AAA

You’d have hoped that at least one of the three, at this point, would have been ready to contribute in some way at the major league level. But Wisler and Sims appear to have very straight, hittable fastballs with almost no ability to make adjustments to that problem, and Blair didn’t pitch well enough to command a spot in the pen. Blair wasn’t bad, though he didn’t get many innings (8.2), but his K rate was poor (4 in those 8.2 IP), and he allowed 15 baserunners within that time. As all go to AAA, you’d think there’d be something of a logjam early on. Mike Soroka, Kolby Allard, Luiz Gohara, Max Fried, and the aforementioned Blair, Sims, and Wisler all are considered starting pitchers who should begin the year at AAA. And as the season goes along, Touki Toussaint and Kyle Wright might push for spots in AAA. The Mediocre Three may see their days as starting pitchers all done very soon.

Kazmir misses start due to jaw contusion

Kazmir leaves game early, then released

I put these two links together to draw a humorous, if not completely unrealistic, connection between Kazmir getting a bruise on his jaw and then getting released. Obviously both events are not connected, but the real events are Kazmir left the game early yesterday, and then he was released. He left the game early because he was fatigued from a bullpen thrown 3 days previous, and then he was later released. This came as such a shock that David O’Brien tweeted that Kazmir would not be released only to tweet one minute later that he would.

Some questions I have:

-Why did Kazmir throw a 90-pitch bullpen on Wednesday only to pitch again on Saturday? Does this point to mismanagement?
-Is AA being more decisive about cutting the string of bad money given to Hector Olivera, then to Matt Kemp, and then to Adrian Gonzalez, Brandon McCarthy, and Scott Kazmir? Should he get any credit since we are obviously getting to the end of the rope with that string of money? After all, Gonzalez and Kazmir are now released (and there was probably not much, if any, money to recoup there), and McCarthy is owed so comparatively little relative to his positive value that there is no money to “double-down” on?
-If we’re not being told the full story with Kazmir, does that concern you?

Otherwise, after finishing 2017 Spring Training with a 9-23 record, the Braves have improved to 13-16. So we’re seeing improvement at least in the spring training won-loss record, which doesn’t mean much.