Astros starter Bud Norris set a Minute Maid Park record on Saturday, striking out 14 batters over seven innings in a 3-2 victory over the Pirates.
Norris is an odd talent. He’ll show flashes of great potential, then get totally shelled next time out. It’s partly control problems, and partly the fact that he is still learning. Either way, the 25-year-old’s fastball is consistently clocked in the mid-90s and he has a slider that serves as a quality out pitch when it’s moving how he wants.
Norris is averaging 9.75 strikeouts per nine innings this season and ran into an awful Pirates team. It was a match made in heaven, and he made it work in record-breaking fashion. Now look for him to be blown up next time out against the Mets.
The Braves have made it official, announcing that they have called up top prospect Ronald Acuña. He’ll bat sixth in tonight’s game against the Reds and will start in left field.
Acuña will be wearing number 13, no doubt to honor past Braves luminaries like Adonis Garcia, Nate McLouth, Ozzie Guillen, Juan Eichelberger and Jerry Royster, all of whom have worn the fabled 1 and 3. Feel like he stands a pretty good chance of besting their exploits.
The 20-year-old Acuña was 11-for-his-last-33 with a homer, a double, four walks, and three stolen bases at Triple-A Gwinnett following a slow start. He tore it up in spring training, however, and hit .325/.374/.522 with 21 home runs, 82 RBI, 44 stolen bases, and 88 runs scored in 139 games last season across three levels of the Braves’ minor league system.
The future was delayed a bit, but it’s here now for the Atlanta Braves’ phenom.