Jair Jurrjens initially didn’t want to wait through two rehabilitation starts in Triple-A Gwinnett before making his 2011 debut. But now that his first scheduled start is here – Saturday against the Mets – he can appreciate it more.
“I tested it twice already full force and I’m confident I’m not feeling anything,” said Jurrjens of the right oblique which kept him out for two starts. “I’m just going to go out there and try to concentrate on the hitters and give my team a good game.”
This will be Jurrjens first major league start since Sept. 14 against the Nationals. He missed the rest of the season and postseason with a knee injury, which required arthroscopic surgery in the offseason. Jurrjens had missed the better part of May and June last season with a hamstring injury.
Jurrjens said this is the best he’s felt heading out for a start since 2009. He went 14-10 with a 2.60 ERA in a career-year that year.
“It’s going to be awesome to go out there and not worry about anything,” Jurrjens said. “Just go out there and throw strikes, only worry about the hitters. (Last year) every pitch you feel an achy soreness somewhere, like ‘oh my god, here it comes.’ It takes you away from concentrating on baseball.”
Jurrjens went 7-6 with a 4.64 ERA in 20 starts last year, his worst year by far in his first three as a Brave.
He’ll take the mound with a good track record against the Mets. He’s 7-2 with a 2.81 ERA in 10 career starts against them.