As expected, the Braves announced Tuesday that prized prospect Julio Teheran will make a spot start Wednesday in Arizona in place of the injured Brandon Beachy, who is on the disabled list with a strained oblique.
It will be Teheran’s second major league start and first since he made his major league debut in Philadelphia on May 7. He allowed three earned runs in 4 2/3 innings in that game, a 3-0 loss to the Phillies, but the Braves liked the way he handled himself and figure he can do more of the same for another spot start.
The Braves’ fifth starter spot won’t come up again until May 31 because of off days, so the Braves felt comfortable using Teheran for another spot start. He was scheduled to pitch Tuesday, which put him more on schedule with the Braves’ needs than Mike Minor, who pitched on Sunday for Gwinnett.
The Braves could have called on Rodrigo Lopez, but the veteran is out of options and they would have had to put him through waivers and likely lost him had they tried to send him back down after a spot start.
Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said the decision wasn’t an indication that the Braves have lost confidence in Minor, who started on Sunday for Gwinnett.
“It’s just the way it lined up,” Gonzalez said. “We know if you hold him back, it would have been seven, eight days from his last start. Minor has been pitching pretty decent, so it’s nothing about confidence.”
He hinted that Minor could be called upon May 31 when the Braves are likely to need a fifth starter for a longer period of time. They expect Beachy to miss at least a month, after straining his left oblique Friday night against the Phillies.
Teheran was expected to join the Braves on Tuesday and travel with them to Arizona. They haven’t yet announced a corresponding roster move.
Brian McCann, who caught Teheran in Philadelphia, thinks the Braves will see even more from their top-rated pitching prospect now that he’s been through the experience before.
“I feel like I have a better idea what we can do with him, and I think the things that we talked about, he went and worked on,” McCann said. “I like everything he does, it’s just a matter of throwing strikes and getting ahead and dictating the at-bat.”