Mike Minor will make 2014 debut for Atlanta Braves on Friday against San Francisco Giants


Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Minor (36) looks for a sign during the fourth inning of game two of the National League divisional series playoff baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Ever since word broke that Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Minor could begin the 2014 season on the disabled list, all of Braves Country has waited (impatiently) for the left-hander to make his debut, and now, that appearance if officially on the calendar.

The Braves announced on Tuesday afternoon that the 26-year-old Minor would be starting Friday night’s home game against the San Francisco Giants, and this is music to the ears of many. Minor was arguably the best pitcher on the staff in 2013, posting a 3.21 ERA while leading the team in innings pitched (204.2), and there was understandable worry about the rotation in his absence.

Fortunately, the other Atlanta starters have passed the test with flying colors despite Minor being on the shelf, and that has allowed the Braves to achieve an impressive record in the standings. Still, there is a large contrast between Minor and someone like David Hale (who, by all indications, will leave the rotation when Minor arrives), and an already potent staff gets a jolt on Friday night.

It will be interesting to see how Fredi Gonzalez handles his starters, especially when Gavin Floyd is ready, but for now, let’s enjoy the debut of Mike Minor.