Perhaps without meaning to, Frank Wren indicated that Craig Kimbrel will not win one of the two remaining bullpen spots on the Atlanta Braves. Here are his comments when he was interviewed on Sirius and XM Radio's MLB Home Plate channel, as well as those of host Jim Bowden:
Host/Jim Bowden: "You've done a tremendous job in rebuilding the bullpen in Atlanta. ... You've got another young kid who actually won the game today for you in Craig Kimbrel, who's got an unbelievable arm. Is there any chance he goes north with you?"
Frank Wren: "Well, I think we're going to give him a little more time, Jim. He's pitched extremely well. He's really shown great poise for a young kid in his first big league camp. He's our right-handed Billy Wagner. He's similar stature-wise, body, his delivery, arm slot, they're all almost identical. And his stuff is very similar. He'll pitch at 96, 97 [mph] and he has that real good, tight slider. Like I said, just like Billy Wagner, just the opposite side. He continues to be impressive but I think for his development we probably need to give him a little more time, just to pitch in triple-A and continue to work on his command and he'll be here real quickly, I think."
There doesn't seem to be any official word from the Braves as to Kimbrel's status, or that of any of the other contenders for the last bullpen spots. There were supposed to be some more roster cuts today, but those never materialized. Perhaps the team is taking more time to examine their options.
By the way, Cory Gearrin has pitched great this spring when he's been invited over to participate in big league games, including coming on today to get Jonny Venters out of a jam. Why are we not considering him as a relief option for the major league pen?