Rotation-related news has not been kind to the Atlanta Braves this week.
Just a day after projected Opening Day starter Kris Medlen hopped off the mound and headed toward the dugout with what is officially being called a right forearm strain (the results from his MRI on Monday have yet to be released), Braves starter Brandon Beachy exited Monday’s game against the Phillies after just two innings complaining of "discomfort" in his right bicep.
He was originally scheduled to throw four innings. He left after throwing just 14 strikes in 37 pitches.
Beachy, who is still in the recovery process of his 2012 Tommy John surgery after experiencing setbacks last season that eventually led him back to Dr. James Andrews for a scope, told reporters after his outing that he has been experiencing tightness in the bicep over the past two starts. He said he was told it was a condition he could continue pitching through in order to loosen up the muscle, but it only got worse against the Phillies.
Beachy said the discomfort is completely different from when he was sidelined in 2012.
He was coming off three shutout innings against the Phillies on March 5.
When Beachy was last healthy, he was baseball’s ERA leader, holding onto a 2.00 ERA through 13 starts. Overall, he’s a career 14-11 with a 121 ERA+ and a 4.8 WAR.
Regardless, similar to Medlen’s pre-diagnosis scenario, this is a setback that could keep the 27-year-old from starting the season on the active roster. If that were the case, and if Medlen and Mike Minor are not ready to go, the Braves will face a significantly depleted Opening Day rotation, with the likes of Julio Teheran, Alex Wood, Freddy Garcia and David Hale projecting to be likely options for a four-man rotation.