The Braves made a roster move yesterday by promoting Mike Foltynewicz back up to the major league squad, while Kevin Gausman was claimed by the Cincinnati Reds. With Gausman gone for good now, Folty is here to stay, good or bad.
The Braves made their decision to put Gausman straight on waivers after his last start where he gave up 5 runs in 4.2 innings against the Reds. Gausman was effective immediately last season when the Braves acquired him in a trade, but this season has been a different story for the 28-year-old pitcher. In 80 innings pitched, Gausman has a record of 3-7 with a 6.19 ERA. It’s been a season-long struggle for Gausman to recapture what made him so effective with the Braves last season.
Mike Foltynewicz was an All-Star last season. Winner of 13 games and game 1 starter for the Braves in the playoffs, Folty has also struggled this season. Like Gausman, Folty was moved from the rotation, performance issues rather than an injury, and had a stint in the minors to try to get back what made him so good last season. The Braves liked what they saw with Folty, who went 5-1 in 10 starts with a 3.86 ERA. Maybe even more positive for Folty, his K-BB ratio was 45-17.
The potential that Mike Foltynewicz provides is, and always has been, is greater than Kevin Gausman. The Braves have more financially tied into Folty than they do Gausman, who has one more year of arbitration, which adds to his value. With the struggles Gausman has this season, the choice between Folty and Gausman was an easy choice for the Braves. The move to get Folty back into the rotation was necessary and Gausman was the odd man out.
There were a lot of expectations thrust on Mike Foltynewicz when he returned from injury earlier this season. Fans and the team expected Folty to come out as the dominant number 1 starter we all knew he could turn be. The expectations and poor health seemed to drag him down as the season went along and the bad starts piled up. This time around, Folty won’t have the same weight on his back. Folty has the cover of Mike Soroka and Dallas Keuchel in the rotation. Now, Folty will just be expected to pitch. We all know he’s more than capable of doing that.