As the 2021 Atlanta Braves major and minor league seasons approach the mid-way point, it is clear to look back and see who has had strong seasons up to this point.
If you were to simply look up and down the Atlanta Braves Top 30 Prospects list to do this, it’s clear which players stick out the most. No. 3 prospect Shea Langeliers is showcasing some massive power with 13 HR’s through 41 games, while No. 9 prospect Michael Harris is emerging as one of the fastest rising prospects in baseball.
It doesn’t stop with positional players either as top pitching prospects Kyle Muller and Tucker Davidson have already made notable contributions in the big leagues so far this season. While these two and more have been phenomenal so far this season, the Braves pitching prospect having the best 2021 season is arguably a name that you haven’t heard much about.
As you can tell by now, the Braves pitching prospect having the best 2021 season is No. 20 prospect Spencer Strider.
Atlanta Braves prospect Spencer Strider having a strong 2021 season.
Strider, the Braves Fourth Round pick in the 2020 MLB Draft out of Clemson, started the 2021 season pitching in Low-A with Augusta where he posted a 0.59 ERA across four starts. Evident by 32 strikeouts compared to only five walks across 15.1 innings pitched, Strider quickly progressed to High-A Rome where he had similar success.
After posting a 2.45 ERA with similar numbers across three starts in Rome, it was evident that Strider needed to be at least in Double-A. Now playing in Double-A with the Mississippi Braves, the 22-year old right-hander has made two starts posting a 5.40 ERA with 13 K’s and four walks.
When looking at his full 2021 minor league season up to this point, it’s evident that the Braves may have something special with the former Fourth Round pick.
Spencer Strider 2021 Season Stats: (Combined between A, A+, and AA)
- 9 starts – 0-1, 2.35 ERA, 0.991 WHIP, 15 BB, 69 K
While the caliber of hitters will clearly increase as he rises throughout the minor leagues, it’s clear that Strider is showcasing some big-time strikeout potential, evident by a 16.2 K/9 so far this season. Strider is also displaying an excellent ability to limit hard-contact, in particular the home run ball.
Strider has continued to gain velocity after undergoing Tommy John Surgery back in 2019 at Clemson sitting in the upper-90’s with his fastball, to pair with an above-average changeup, as well as a strong breaking ball.
While walks were also an issue at times in college, Strider has shown improvement so far this season on limiting free-passes, something that will only benefit him going forward.
While he is currently a starter, Strider is a player who could potentially turn into a big piece of the Braves’ future bullpen plans. Still a year or two away from the big leagues, it’s clear early on however that the Braves may have something special so far in the young right-hander.