In a move that was inevitable, the Atlanta Braves just announced that they have designated Bartolo Colon for assignment.
The Braves brought Colon in as a free agent to provide some innings and stability for a rebuilding club — a sturdy veteran who can save the bullpen once a week as younger starters ramp up their workloads — but he did the exact opposite, failing to complete five innings in four of his last five starts and in six of his 13 starts overall. He has an 8.14 ERA and has allowed 92 hits in 63 innings. A recent stint on the disabled list seemed more a move to hide him than to treat any injury. He emerged from the DL last night and was lit up by the San Diego Padres for six runs in four innings. The Padres, of course, have the worst offense in all of baseball. He has been, without question, the worst starter in the league this year and his $12.5 million one-year contract the Braves gave him was a disaster.
It’s not impossible to imagine some team giving him a minor league deal once he’s released. Mets fans still pine for the guy for some reason. Most likely remembering how good he was for them the past few seasons and not seeing how poor he’s been this year. I suppose the change of scenery could do him good. People have counted out Colon in the past, only to see him prove them wrong.
That said, at age 44, it’s quite likely that this truly is the end of the road for Bartolo Colon.
Jaime Garcia has been at the center of trade talks for several days now, but on Friday night, he commanded center stage for an entirely different reason. The Braves’ southpaw went head-to-head with Dodgers’ lefty Alex Wood and mashed his first career grand slam: a two-out, 399-foot blast that cleared the wall in right field and put the Braves up 9-0 in the fifth inning.
The bases-loaded knock was the third career home run for Garcia, whose contributions at the plate have been few and far between over his nine-year track in the major leagues. Not only did the homer mark an impressive career first for the 30-year-old, but it was just the second pitcher grand slam in Braves’ history and the first since 1966.
Garcia looked almost as impressive on the mound during Friday’s series opener, issuing one run, four hits and three strikeouts through his first six innings. The Braves currently lead the Dodgers 12-1 in the top of the seventh inning.
As for whether the slam will affect negotiations between the Braves and Twins? MLB.com’s Mike Petriello put it best:
Athletics’ first baseman Ryon Healy had a scary moment during Friday’s loss to the Mets. Lucas Duda smacked a single to the first base side, where the ball took a high hop and caught Healy in the left temple. He crumpled to the ground after getting struck by the one-hopper, but was eventually able to stand and walk off the field with assistance from a trainer.
Prior to the injury, Healy went 2-for-3 at the plate with an RBI single in the first inning. He was replaced by Yonder Alonso, who finished off the rest of the night’s 7-5 loss with a walk in two plate appearances.
Following the game, manager Bob Melvin told reporters that Healy did not appear to have sustained a concussion as a result of the hit. Healy said he thinks he’ll be good to go for Saturday’s game, though a final decision likely won’t be made until tomorrow.