Results tagged ‘ fredi gonzalez ’
Right-handed starting pitcher Matt Wisler became the third of four former Gwinnett Braves pitchers to make his first Major League start with the Atlanta Braves this season when he faced the New York Mets on June 19 at Turner Field.
He pitched 8.0 innings that night with one run and six hits allowed, a hit batsman and two strikeouts to earn a victory in his big-league debut, as the Braves scored a pair of runs for him in the bottom of the eighth inning to head toward a 2-1 win.
Despite all of the new experiences the 22-year-old has had in his transition to the Majors, that superb first outing was as unexpected as anything, he said.
“What surprised me was my debut going so well,” Wisler said. “I didn’t really see that one coming.”
Wisler has gone on to make 10 starts for Atlanta this season with a 5-2 record and 4.74 ERA (30 ER in 57.0 IP). He suffered his first career loss the second time his spot in the rotation came around in a road start on June 25 against the Washington Nationals, but he then won four of his next five outings.
“Being up here, feeling a part of it, I don’t feel overwhelmed or anything, which is good,” he said. “It’s not really been too much change. Obviously, hitters are better and everything, but you have to pitch the same game and you still have to get outs and everything. You’ve just got to be executing a little more consistently up here.”
Those performances followed a 12-start stint with the G-Braves to begin the season after Atlanta acquired him from the San Diego Padres on April 5, four days before Gwinnett’s season opener, in a six-player trade that sent outfielder Melvin Upton, Jr. and relief pitcher Craig Kimbrel to the Padres. Wisler began the year 0-3 with a 6.75 ERA (15 ER in 20 IP) in his four April starts, but after the calendar flipped to May he posted a 3-1 record and 3.20 ERA (16 ER in 45.0 IP) across his final eight starts before his call-up.
The moment he got the news of his promotion was memorable, as well. Wisler said he went into pitching coach Marty Reed’s office confused about why he had been pulled from his regularly scheduled start in Louisville, and Reed acted as though he was upset with Wisler for questioning his authority before he told the pitcher the Braves had promoted him to the big leagues.
Wisler also said the work he and Marty did with his mechanics benefitted him as he moved into the big leagues.
“Marty was a great pitching coach for me, helped me a lot this year getting back on track,” Wisler said.
He was one-quarter of a group of starting pitchers who began the season with the G-Braves but have since moved on to Atlanta, along with fellow right-handers Williams Perez and Mike Foltynewicz, and left-hander Manny Banuelos (currently on the disabled list). That quartet has combined to go 14-12 with a 4.69 ERA (120 ER in 230.1 IP) in 46 appearances, 39 of which have been starts.
“It’s pretty crazy to think that all four of us were in Gwinnett this year and now three of us are in the rotation,” Wisler said. “It’s great that I got to know those guys a little bit before I got up here. … It’s cool to know those guys, just from a little bit (in Gwinnett), and think that we have a chance to be together for a while.”
Those starters are part of a group of 29 non-rehab players who have played for both Gwinnett and Atlanta this season. Braves’ manager Fredi Gonzalez has relied heavily on former G-Braves this season, and he said he has been impressed by the quality of players he gets after they’ve worked with G-Braves’ manager Brian Snitker, Reed and hitting coach John Moses.
“Everybody has made some kind of an impact, some kind of contribution,” Gonzalez said. “Snit, Marty and Moses have done a great job preparing those guys. It’s a luxury to have a guy like Brian Snitker as the Triple-A manager. … He’s been dead on with every guy he’s brought up. You don’t have to worry about the guys not playing the game the right way, not getting a sign. That all stems from those guys in Triple-A in Gwinnett.”
Wisler got to enjoy that high level of instruction for only two-and-a-half months, but that relatively short time had a significant affect on his development during a season that has brought numerous new experiences.
“It’s been unbelievable,” he said. “I’ve enjoyed every minute I’ve been up here. It is definitely a privilege to be here. I definitely learned a lot in Gwinnett, too. … I’m just always soaking in new information and trying to get better.”
The Atlanta Braves came up short in a 9-8 slugfest Friday against the Washington Nationals at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. However, a pair of potential 2015 Gwinnett Braves provided much of Atlanta’s firepower.
Infielder Pedro Ciriaco and outfielder Cedric Hunter were the only two Braves to play the entire game, and they accounted for four of the team’s 14 hits.
Ciriaco fell a triple shy of the cycle, going 3-for-4 with a solo home run in the third inning and a two-out, two-run double in the fifth that gave the Braves an 8-7 lead. Hunter scored the go-ahead run after he had singled in the preceding at-bat. He finished 1-for-5.
Other possible G-Brave position players:
Jace Peterson (2B), 2-for-4, 2 R.
Braeden Schlehuber (C), 1-for-3, RBI, threw out attemping basestealer in the fifth inning.
Joey Terdoslavich (1B), 0-for-2, 2 K.
Jose Peraza (2B), 0-for-1.
Todd Cunningham (CF), 0-for-1.
Jose Yepez (C), 0-for-0, HBP.
Three pitchers who project to make Atlanta’s Opening Day roster, Alex Wood, Jason Grilli and Josh Outman, covered the first four innings on the mound. Manager Fredi Gonzalez then turned to four potential G-Braves to cover the final five frames.
RHP Juan Jaime, 0.2 IP, 3 H, 4 ER, 3 BB.
RHP Michael Kohn, 1.1 IP, 2 BB, K.
RHP Arodys Vizcaino (BS, 1; L, 0-1), 1.0 IP, 1 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, WP.
RHP Tyrell Jenkins, 2.0 IP, 2 H, K.
The Braves will enter their first of three split-squad days of Spring Training on Saturday. Part of the team will remain at Champion Stadium to take on the Detroit Tigers at 1:05 p.m., while another portion will face the New York Mets at 1:10 p.m. in Port St. Lucie, Fla. The club will then come back together for a 1:05 p.m. contest Sunday against the Houston Astros in Kissimmee, Fla.
Medlen, who is expecting his first child in the next few weeks, decided that time was not in his favor, so on Friday afternoon at Coolray Field in front of a handful of Braves fans, he announced that he would no longer participate in the classic.
Medlen, who began the season in the bullpen in 2012, was arguably the most dominant starting pitcher in the MLB down the stretch. He posted a 9-0 record with a 0.97 ERA, 84 strikeouts, 10 walks in 83.2 innings.
The 27-year old was disappointed in withdrawing his name, as he was one of few American players to take the plunge and commit early in the process. However, he admitted that he may have jumped the gun a little bit early and did not account for the birth of his child falling near his departure date.
Medlen will leave Team USA in a bind, as they will go into the classic with only three starting pitchers. R.A. Dickey, Derek Holland and Ryan Vogelsong will anchor the staff, as Team USA will try to win their first WBC title.
“You only have your first kid once,” said Atlanta Braves Manager Fredi Gonzalez at the same Coolray Field event.
Medlen will return to his regular routine, preparing for Spring Training after the birth of his child.
The right-hander is a permanent mainstay in Gwinnett Braves history, as he was the first G-Braves pitcher to record a victory. To read more about his climb to the MLB and his history with the Gwinnett Braves, click here.
As Medlen prepares for the season, so do the Gwinnett Braves. They kick off the season Thursday, April 4th at 7:05 p.m. against the Charlotte Knights at Coolray Field. For more information on the G-Braves or Coolray Field, visit the website at Gwinnettbraves.com, or through or social media outlets at facebook.com/GwinnettBraves1 and twitter.com/GwinnettBraves!