2019 Atlanta Braves Player Review: Kyle Wright

2019 was a forgettable season for Kyle Wright, as he took a step back and not just in his short MLB stint; Wright was nowhere near as effective in AAA as he had been in 2018. Aside from his 8.69 ERA and 1.881 WHIP in 19.2 MLB innings, he had a 4.17 ERA and 1.264 WHIP in 112.1 AAA innings. Many people thought Wright was rushed through the system, as he had only thrown 28.1 AAA innings prior to starting 2019 in the Braves rotation. In addition to that, 2018 was Wright’s first full year in the system and he managed to earn a September call up. Wright pitched 3 seasons at Vanderbilt and was the fifth overall pick in the 2017 draft so he had more experience than many minor leaguers, but still followed a very fast track to the majors.

The good news for Wright, he still has all the potential in the world. He finished the season ranked as MLB Pipeline’s #35 prospect and with four plus pitches he has a very good shot to compete for a spot in the Braves rotation. Another positive, he seemed to figure something out around mid-June, as in his last 13 starts of the year he held a 3.30 ERA in 76.1 AAA innings. Wright’s curveball is his best off-speed pitch, but if he can find a bit more consistency with his slider it could wind up becoming a deadly pitch. A part of Wright’s problem thus far could be his fastball usage. He has above average off-speed pitches, but he throws his fastball more than 50% of the time. This leads to a lot of hard-hit balls, creating a lot of hits and runs.

A Potential Trade?

Will Wright even be a Brave come Opening Day? With the Braves plethora of pitching prospects and holes at third base, catcher and the top of the rotation, Wright could find himself on the move this offseason. If I had to guess, I would say Wright or Wilson are the most likely pitching prospects to be traded. While both have seen the majors, Anderson is more highly regarded with Muller, Davidson, and others not far behind. If the Braves want to make a big trade without moving Pache, Waters or Anderson, the package would probably have to start with Wright.

What will 2020 Wright do?

Assuming he isn’t moved, he will join a large group of prospects to fight for a spot in the rotation to start the season. While he proved last Spring Training that he deserved a spot, this is a new year. I would give Wright the highest odds, but Wilson or Newcomb could also win the spot with Ian Anderson as a dark horse candidate. Another option for Wright would be to provide bullpen help, possibly as the long-relief option; think 2018 Max Fried. AA has stated that he wants to add at least one veteran starter, so it looks like the fifth spot will be up for grabs for a young guy to step up and prove themselves, similarly to last season.

Author: Matt P

Hello, I’m Matt Pocza! I am a 4th year finance and economics student at the University of Florida and I love the Atlanta Braves. I’ve played baseball my entire life, and I am a sidearm pitcher for the club team at Florida. I also enjoy scuba diving, football and business. Follow me on twitter @braves_rumors!

7 thoughts on “2019 Atlanta Braves Player Review: Kyle Wright”

  1. Just read through the previous several threads.

    Rob, I would like to echo the sentiments of everyone and thank you for all you have done to energize this blog. You have spent a lot of time and effort in this endeavor — know that it has been appreciated.

    I look forward to the content that Ryan and his friends will bring to keep this site one of my favorites on the internet.

  2. No. Even when guys like him put up zero or slightly negative WAR they allow the team to not need to make reactionary moves or ever get caught short at a position (and need to burn 40-man slots as a result). I have seen estimates that the roster flexibility guys like Charlie bring is worth an extra 2+ wins for good teams.

  3. I personally hope Kyle Wright is given an opportunity in Atlanta. It’s hard to say a guy got a raw deal if he gets to pitch in the Bigs, I guess. Kyle got a raw deal the way he was rushed through the system, and thrust into the rotation.

    Plus the pitchers I wouldn’t hate to see him traded for, such as Thor, aren’t really available. On the flip side, the guys who are available, I’d be mad to see him get shipped out for. I just don’t see where Boyd or Gray have seperated themselves as superior.

  4. Ever hear Murph vent? Tomahawk Take has an interesting article.

    For giggles, check out Murph’s bwar the year Dawson won mvp. Murphy was the best player in the game for half a decade or more. Too bad owners and the commish were pond scum.

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