The Atlanta Braves were unable to get around a strong performance by Mike Leake of the Cincinnati Reds as they lost the game on May 21 by the score of 4-1. Leake picked up his first win of the year for the Reds while Mike Minor had his fourth loss.
Mike Minor lost his second decision in a row in the May 21 game against the Reds, going six innings while giving up four runs on five hits to go along with four strikeouts on the day as well. He was very inconsistent throughout the game to say the least, throwing 113 pitches with only 66 of them being strikes, with four walks given up on the day as well. Four out of the five hits against him were home runs, with three of them coming back-to-back-to-back in the fourth inning. Minor was only throwing around 90 mph with his fastball, and with a lack of command it was no wonder that the Reds were able to tee off on him in the game.
In a bit of irony, giving up four runs was actually good for Minor, as he had given up at least six runs over his past four starts heading into the Reds game and his ERA dropped from 7.09 to 6.96. All of the stats point to the fact that Mike Minor needs to be either demoted or put into the bullpen right now, as he will continue to cost the team games until he gets his command down. I'm surprised that manager Fredi Gonzalez even let him pitch in the game against the Reds considering his last four performances.
There are multiple options that the team could consider when it comes to replacing Minor. Kris Medlen or Livan Hernandez could go into the rotation from the bullpen, and Julio Teheran or Jair Jurrjens could be called up from the minors. Starting pitching depth certainly isn't a weakness for the team, so it is interesting as to why Gonzalez keeps giving Minor chances to lose more games for the Braves before going with someone else. Personally, I would like to see Medlen given a chance in the rotation right now, as the team has Hernandez to fill his spot in the bullpen and Kris has been pitching well this year with a 2.28 ERA in 23 innings pitched.
Ryan Kekoufski is a lifelong Atlanta Braves fan. He covers sports for the Yahoo! Contributor Network, and currently resides in Virginia. Follow him on Twitter @RyanKekoufski.
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- Mike Minor
- Mike Leake
- Cincinnati Reds
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