The Braves bullpen faltered on Tuesday, allowing the Blue Jays to come back and win 5-3 while extending their flawless record against Atlanta this season. The Braves will look to bounce back on Wednesday as they turn to Max Fried, who put together an encouraging outing last week following his stay on the injured list. He worked five innings against the Nationals, allowing one run. He has yet to face the Blue Jays, but their heavily right-handed lineup could certainly pose a challenge.
Fried enters play with a 1-1 record along with an unsightly 8.44 ERA for the season. His paltry work to begin the season was cause for concern, but the hope for Atlanta now is that his ineffectiveness can be chalked up to injury. Another solid outing would certainly help to re-establish Fried into the rotation and put the Braves back on track with regards to their rotation. Batted ball data from the first three starts of the season, prior to Fried’s trip to the IL, may not necessarily be informative if the injury has now healed.
Opposing Fried for Toronto will be veteran left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu, whose exploits against the Braves in postseason have been well-documented. Ryu was dominant in the 2018 playoffs against Atlanta, but has since departed for the Blue Jays. He still manufactures ground balls at a high rate and his sinker/two-seam/cutter combination are still a challenge for opposing batters. Ryu is 2-2 with a 3.31 ERA this season, but was roughed up a bit in his last start against Oakland, allowing four runs in five innings.
Given the nature of their loss last night, it seems relevant to point out that Atlanta will be rejoined by Chris Martin on Wednesday after his lengthy stint on the injured list. The veteran will be a significant addition to a relief corps whose right-handed options have been limited in his absence.
The Braves fell below .500 again following their loss on Tuesday, but will look to pull even yet again on the back of their young ace. As noted above, another strong start from Fried would help to put another piece in place for a rotation that needs stability.
Game Date/Time: Wednesday, May 12th, 7:20 P.M. ET
Location: Truist Park, Atlanta, Georgia
TV: Bally Sports, MLBTV
Radio: 680 AM / 93.7 FM The Fan, WNNX 100.5, Braves Radio Network