Anthony Varvaro Receives Call to Atlanta

Photo courtesy of Chris Roughgarden

In the most recent subtraction from the Gwinnett Braves roster, reliever Anthony Varvaro has been promoted to the Atlanta Braves, while Cory Gearrin has been reassigned to Triple-A Gwinnett. Gearrin returns to the G-Braves as their closer, as he has recorded six saves in eight opportunities already this season.

The G-Braves closer has been the most consistent pitcher on the staff this season, boasting a 3-0 record alongside a stunning 1.65 ERA. The righty has struck out 38 batters and walked just eight in 32.2 innings pitched in 2012. To say Gearrin has been lights out when he’s been on the mound this year is treading lightly.

Photo courtesy of Melinda Pease

Varvaro’s role in Atlanta’s bullpen has yet to be determined, however he has been on a tear for Gwinnett as of late. The right-hander struck out nine batters in his last 3.2 innings of work on the G-Braves recent 10-game road trip. He was the most dominant arm in the Gwinnett bullpen over the last two weeks.

This season with Gwinnett, Varvaro registered a 0-0 record with a 2.81 ERA after appearing in 18 games for Gwinnett. The righty struck out an incredible 35 batters, while walking just 12 amidst 25.2 innings of work. The Atlanta Braves had originally retroactively placed Varvaro on the disabled list prior to the start of the season. Thus making Varvaro’s numbers that much more impressive, considering he had a late start.

Varvaro made one spot-start for Gwinnett this season, in the second game of a doubleheader against Toledo in May. The righty lasted 3.0 innings, allowing two runs on six hits, alongside three strikeouts and yielded one walk en route to the no decision.

The St. John’s University alum was originally selected by the Seattle Mariners in the 12th round of the 2005 MLB Amateur Draft. In 2011, Varvaro appeared in 18 games for the Atlanta Braves out of the bullpen. The Queens, New York native recorded an impressive 2.63 ERA in 24.0 innings of work for Atlanta. Varvaro surrendered seven total runs on 15 hits and struck out 23 hitters while walking 11 last season. To say Varvaro has been prepared for this moment is an understatement.

Atlanta had been the hottest team in baseball coming into the New York Yankees series, winning six of their last seven decisions. However, the mighty New York bats silenced the Braves to a sweep at Turner Field. The Braves now find themselves in second place in the NL East, as they trail the Washington Nationals by an alarming 5.0 games. Entering the dog days of summer, Atlanta wants all the firepower they can handle out of their bullpen and this move is just an indicator of what’s ahead. Be prepared to see a lot of shifting between Gwinnett and Atlanta players in the coming months.

By: Tony Piraro

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