It feels weird typing “Atlanta Braves vs. Baltimore Orioles Series Preview” as I just cannot recall the last time the Braves actually played them. However, whenever it was, I can guarantee that whenever it was, both teams weren’t as good as they are now.

The Baltimore Orioles franchise last won a World Series in 1983. In the next 40 years after, the Orioles:

  • Highest season win % was .605 in 1997
  • Carried a win % below .300 1 time
  • Carried a win % between .300-399 5 times
  • Carried a win % between .400-.499 17 times
  • Carried a win % above .500 16 times

It feels like this team can be a staple in the last bullet point as the talent pool is young (8th youngest in MLB) and should be together for 5-6 years, at minimum. If they take the Braves route and offer young players extensions early, that 5-6 could turn into a decade.

Pitching Matchups for the Braves vs. Orioles Series

Game 1: Max Fried (0.45 ERA) vs. Dean Kremer (6.67 ERA)

Game 2: Spencer Strider (2.57 ERA) vs. Kyle Bradish (6.14 ERA)

Game 3: Bryce Elder (1.75 ERA) vs. Tyler Wells (3.34 ERA)

Braves come out as the paper champs in all 3 of these matchups. Adding to it that these are home games, one would think that anything less than 2 wins would feel like failure.

Transaction a Day AA

Some great news going into tonight’s game and some…interesting news as well.

The #Braves today returned RHP Raisel Iglesias from his rehabilitation assignment and reinstated him from the injured list after optioning LHP Dylan Dodd to Triple-A Gwinnett following yesterday’s game.   The club today also recalled INF Braden Shewmake to Atlanta and placed INF Ehire Adrianza on the 10-day injured list, backdated to May 2, with right elbow inflammation. Additionally, C Travis d’Arnaud tonight begins a rehabilitation assignment with the Gwinnett Stripers.

Braves Twitter feed

How the Above Impacts the Bullpen

The Braves bullpen we’ve seen thus far this season will each move down 1 role to make room for Raisel Iglesias. However, the Braves optioned a starting pitcher, which leaves only 4 in the rotation: Fried, Spencer Strider, Charlie Morton, and Bryce Elder. When the Braves need the 5th starter, the team will have a hard decision to make (or they’ll just find someone to IL). Of the 9 guys in the bullpen, only Nick Anderson and Dylan Lee have options. Anderson has a 3.29 ERA, but he’s been so much better than that as he’s sporting a 0.7 BB/9 and 11.9 K/9. He’s also inherited 3 runners and none have scored. Lee, simply put, is a serious LH workhorse, already appearing 15 games. Like Anderson, his peripherals are elite despite a 3.14 ERA: 2.5 BB/9, 10.7 K/9. He’s also inherited 5 runners and none have scored.

In my opinion, you just cannot send them down. This roster crunch also doesn’t factor in Lucas Luetge, who is also out of options, but currently injured. Here are the other relievers and their current stats:

Of this group, A.J. has allowed 2 of 3 inherited runners to score, Tonkin has allow 5 of 11, Yates has allowed 1 of 2, Chavez has allowed 4 of 8, and McHugh has allowed 2 of 7. So, while those ERAs look pretty sparkly, this relief core has allowed 14 inherited runners to score, which is why it’s hard to believe those ERAs are representative of what we’ve seen.

Travis d’Arnaud will start a rehab that will likely be very short and I’m guessing he’ll return by Monday at the latest. Braden Shewmake getting his first taste in the bigs is kind of a big deal, especially considering the defensive shortcomings we’ve seen from Vaughn Grissom in the early goings. Shewmake has been providing quality, but not spectacular, defense for Gwinnett and doing his best Dansby impression at the plate, with a lot of power but very little patience.

Atlanta Braves vs. Baltimore Orioles Lineups

The Orioles…

And the Braves….

Whoa! Shewmake gets called up and immediately starts over Vaughn Grissom. Michael Harris II is listed as day to day, so Snitker is likely just giving him an extra day of rest. This should be a fun series.

Thanks for reading! If you missed Jeremy’s piece on MIchael Soroka, click the link to catch up.