Braves 4, Marlins 3 – Sean Newcomb Pitches Like Our Ace

Braves 4, Marlins 3 – Sean Newcomb Pitches Like Our Ace

What’s not to love about taking 3 of 4? Yes, yes, IWOTM (this time the “M” stands for “Marlins”), but this one could tell us a lot about what is to come. More on that in a moment.

The offense did enough to win. We were gifted a free run in the first when the Marlins let a Nick Markakis pop up drop, scoring Freddie Freeman. Ender Inciarte hit his second home run in as many days, and he’s starting to come alive. He’s 9 for his last 20 with said 2 home runs and 2 doubles. Production out of him further lengthens the lineup.

But Sean Newcomb is your story. He is on a 20-inning scoreless streak at the moment, finishing the day with 6 IP, 1 H, 0 R, and 6 K. He walked four, which is still the only real blemish in his game. But he’s been pretty much unhittable in that span, giving up only 5 hits during that 20-inning span. He sits with a 2.51 ERA with 54 K’s in 46.2 IP. His K, H, and HR rates have all improved significantly since last year, and if he can keep anywhere close to this up, he will be considered the staff ace before too long. As it sits, his WAR puts him up with the elite SP in baseball.

But I want to talk to you today about what’s happening in A+. Bryse Wilson has since been promoted to AA, but his work at A+ made him the MVP of the early season. He had 1 ER, 7 BB, and 26 K in 26.2 IP in his 5 starts, good for a 0.34 ERA. He was simply lights-out, and at this point, ahead of the Blue Chip Triplets (Ian Anderson, Joey Wentz, and Kyle Muller) that were all drafted ahead of him in 2016. Those guys, though, are doing fine in their own right, all currently at A+, though none pitching like they’ll be earning a call to AA any time soon. Anderson has a low IP per outing (31 IP in 7 GS), and that’s tops amongst them.

Troy Bacon, taken in the 4th round last year out of JC, is pitching well in a long relief role, and Thomas Burrows (part of the Luiz Gohara trade) earned a promotion to A+ and has been ok (17 IP, 16 K, 9 BB, 14 H).

On the position player side, the two top prospects are Brett Cumberland and Cristian Pache, both up-the-middle guys enjoying around .750 OPS so far. No one is hitting the cover off the ball, but those guys putting up decent numbers for a catcher and centerfielder, respectively, relative to their professional experience is encouraging in the young season.

We head to Chicago to take on the Cubs tomorrow.

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