Wright and Wilson, two young and promising pitchers who struggled this past season for the Atlanta Braves, could really use an excellent Spring to start a critical 2020 campaign.
The Atlanta Braves have entered this new year much like they have in recent ones, still greatly benefiting from a deep farm system and strong major-league core.
Earlier this week, and the week before, we delved into the former here, as I graded the organization’s most recent draft class as well as ranked the top-30 prospects currently within the system — a couple of series that yet again illustrated just how rich and prosperous this Braves’ franchise truly is.
But over the next couple of weeks — with the team’s prospect rankings still fresh on everyone’s minds — I want to take a closer look at several of these ranked Braves’ prospects, especially ones that currently find themselves in interesting situations going into the 2020 season, both good situations… and of course bad ones.
Back to Wright and Wilson…
It’s interesting how hype works with prospects, especially ones who are pitchers. In 2018, Bryse Wilson made that gutsy MLB debut versus the Pirates in late August, punching out five and picking up the win after five shutout innings; a start you can look back at, here.
There were flashes of a sure-fire star during that start, as we were hoping next year would be the year he became part of the Atlanta Braves rotation.
Then there was Kyle Wright just a couple weeks later that season, the righty that seemed to have even better stuff, not to mention more upside. Wright’s debut was certainly less exciting — a two-inning relief appearance versus the Red Sox — yet still an instant success (he didn’t allow a hit).
Of course, it wasn’t ALL magical: Wilson wound up struggling in a few relief appearances at the tail end of the season, and Wright followed suit, as both pitchers ended their cups of coffee with too many walks, hits and runs allowed, though, granted, it was a very small body of work.
However, the tone had been set. Here were two highly ranked pitching prospects coming off big seasons in the upper minors, and even more… they had found some success in the big leagues; that automatically meant they were both destined to perform even better in 2019, right?