ATLANTA -- Knowing the significant value that right-hander Mike Soroka adds to their immediate and long-term future, the Braves took the precautionary approach when he informed the medical staff that he has recently felt some discomfort in his right shoulder.So instead of making his scheduled start against the Cubs on
ATLANTA -- Knowing the significant value that right-hander Mike Soroka adds to their immediate and long-term future, the Braves took the precautionary approach when he informed the medical staff that he has recently felt some discomfort in his right shoulder.
So instead of making his scheduled start against the Cubs on Thursday night, the 20-year-old Soroka was placed on the 10-day disabled list (retroactive to Monday) with inflammation in the shoulder. Lefty Max Fried was recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett to face Chicago, but the game was postponed due to inclement weather.
"It wasn't something structural or anything of concern," manager Brian Snitker said. "It was even something [where] he said, 'I can pitch through it.' ... But if the guys bring it up, there is obviously something there, because he's a kid who doesn't have any history of having anything wrong. He's been solid as a rock his whole Minor League career with the innings that he has logged and all of that, so it's more just taking precaution and taking care of it."
The early indication is that Soroka will be ready to pitch by Wednesday, when he'll be eligible to be activated, but he will likely make a rehab start before rejoining the rotation.
Ranked as Atlanta's No. 3 prospect and baseball's No. 28 by MLB Pipeline, Soroka provided a glimpse of his tremendous potential during each of his first three career starts. He started to feel some discomfort after Saturday's start in Miami. He was in line to record his second win before a Jose Bautista error allowed the Marlins to tally four unearned runs.
He did not inform the Braves about the discomfort until Wednesday. Initial tests and an MRI performed on Thursday provided further reason to believe he is not dealing with a serious ailment.
"It's just something that I have been pitching through a little bit," Soroka said. "Sometimes you don't know if new soreness from the start will just go away. It just didn't really go away, so it is more of just a concern. They thought [putting me on the DL is] just precautionary to make sure it goes away. It's a long season, with a lot of first-time, high-stress pitches, so [we] just wanted to make sure that it was all under control."
Snitker acknowledged that Soroka might simply be getting his first introduction to the normal soreness pitchers inevitably encounter. But even if that is the case, the team did not want to take any chances with a pitcher who could be a valuable rotation asset for many years to come.
"I probably could have said nothing and went out there and pitched today," Soroka said. "But had it opened up, it could be something that is a lot worse to deal with than just [resting for] a couple of days."
The 24-year-old Fried ranks as the Braves' No. 7 prospect, and No. 81 overall, and he made four relief appearances for Atlanta earlier this season. He completed five scoreless innings against the Cubs last Sept. 3 in the first of his four Major League starts.
Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for MLB.com since 2001.