The Braves made a surprising roster move the other day when they removed Chase Whitley from the 40 man roster. Today they have answered how they plan to fill the spot, recalling 20 year old right handed pitcher Bryse Wilson from Gwinnett.
The 6’1”, 225 pound right handed pitcher was a star pitcher and quarterback in high school in North Carolina, and a member of the Braves loaded 2016 prep pitching draft class. Wilson, a fourth round pick, actually beat the trio of top two round picks to the big leagues- Ian Anderson, Joey Wentz, and Kyle Muller. He joins Kolby Allard, Touki Toussaint, and Mike Soroka on the list of Braves top prospects who were added to the roster this year for their MLB debuts.
Wilson is known for his plus fastball and bulldog mentality of challenging hitters on the mound.
Wilson has a plus fastball that he throws around 95 MPH and produces heavy sink, leading to a lot of grounders. He also has an above average slider and an average change, and throws his pitches for strikes.
He debuted in 2016 and in nine outings in the GCL he posted an 0.68 ERA and 0.90 WHIP. He moved to Rome in 2017, and spent the entire year there going 10-7 with a 2.50 ERA and 1.04 WHIP with 139 strikeouts in 137 innings.
Wilson started in Florida this year and dominated with an 0.34 ERA and 0.86 WHIP in five starts. He was quickly promoted to Double A and went 3-5 with a 3.97 ERA and 1.34 WHIP in 15 starts, but those numbers are slightly inflated by a slow start at the new level.
Wilson’s first six starts at Mississippi were mediocre, but he changed his fastball grip and really took off over his last nine starts there. For a kid that’s just 20 years old that kind of willingness and success in making adjustments shows the makings of an advanced pitcher.
He was promoted to Gwinnett at the trade deadline and in three starts he has a 4.50 ERA and 0.85 WHIP. On the year he has 23 starts for 123.2 innings, posting a combined 3.27 ERA and 1.16 WHIP with 139 strikeouts to 35 walks.
Wilson isn’t the prospect with the best pure stuff on the farm, but his pitchability and willingness to challenge hitters has helped him move quickly up the ladder- especially in 2018. He has a ceiling as a middle of the rotation innings eater, and has a chance to be a high leverage reliever should starting not work out- not that I have any concerns about him as a starter with his mix of stuff and pitchability.