ATLANTA -- Mike Soroka has been cleared to start completing simple throwing exercises. But the Braves are likely more than a month away from activating the talented young hurler from the 10-day injured list.
“He's been off long enough [that] he's going to have to start over,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “We’ve just got to be patient with him. He’s been through a lot. When he gets here, it'll be great.”
Hopes of Soroka returning from right Achilles surgery by the end of April were erased when his right shoulder began to bother him after he made his second spring start while at the alternate training site on April 6.
Now the Braves will have to allow Soroka to rebuild his arm strength, much like he would if he’d begun throwing during the weeks leading up to Spring Training. The 23-year-old Canadian played catch on Tuesday for the first time in three weeks.
Once Soroka builds his arm strength, he’ll have to complete a few bullpen sessions and throw live batting practice a few times before being cleared to make what might be at least five Minor League rehab starts.
So, while a timetable hasn’t been set, it seems unlikely Soroka could rejoin Atlanta’s rotation before June’s second half.
Soroka posted the National League’s third-best ERA (2.68) during his stellar 2019 rookie season and then tore his right Achilles on Aug. 3, while making his third start of the 2020 season. He experienced no problems while completing the final two innings of the Braves’ Grapefruit League season finale against the Red Sox on March 30.