It was a difficult week for former All-Star Mike Foltinevich. On Monday, he was DFA’d by Braves after showing a sharp drop in speed for a second consecutive season, leading to porous marches back to the Marlins and Rays. And yesterday he was waiting for Gwinnett, because none of the other 29 teams claimed to refuse. It just shows how far he has fallen in a few months.
Even after a cloudless start to 2019, Foltynewicz managed to bounce back and become the best owner of the Braves down the stretch, which eventually led him to start the game for the winner and take all 5 against the Cardinal of St. Louis. We don̵
Folty’s speed is reduced by as much as five miles per hour compared to last year and over seven miles per hour from 2018, which leads many people (including me) to question whether there is any major problem. However, yesterday in the heat of the MLB Network Alex Antopoulos was clear, saying that Folty returned to camp healthy and in good shape after a long dismissal, things just were not there. And for a pitcher who has always been a “man of things,” there’s no way he can find much success if he can’t fix it.
#Braves GM Alex Antopoulos discussed the decision before DFA Mike Foltinevich with @MadDogUnleashed on #HighHeat. pic.twitter.com/AaEpVXaZ4j
– MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) July 30, 2020
This does not mean that it is impossible. The brave leave the door open for a potential return. Foltynewicz will handle the taxi squad at Gwinnett, and if he can show a steady increase in speed, Braves will most likely give him another shot. After all, they don’t have many other promising options in their rotation after Mike Soroka and Max Fried.
One of the ways that would be possible for Folty is if he gains some weight.
Although Antopoulos told MLB Network that Folty had returned to camp in good shape, it was clear that he was much skinnier than he had been over the years. After admiring Gwyneth, Foltinevich acknowledged the concern and reportedly told Brian Snitker that he was already working on it in the hope that it would lead to increased speed.
#Braves Snitker says the team hopes to add some weight to Folty through a diet and exercise plan. Snitker believes they can regain its speed if they rebuild it the right way.
– 92.9 Game (@ 929TheGame) July 30, 2020
This will not be an easy road for Folty, and I would not expect him to return to Atlanta soon. However, while there are no major problems, there is a chance that he will sort things out in Gwinnett. Foltynewicz managed to do so last year and returned as Braves’ best owner. It will be a little more challenging to do this season, as there is no season for the minor league, but through whip training and live practice, coaches will be able to find out if his stuff is back in shape. Because of the brave who are desperate for help with the spin, let’s hope Folty can turn it around quickly.
Photo: David J. Griffin / Icon Sportswire