Now that we are a few weeks into the Braves offseason, we are going to continue our yearly offseason tradition of reviewing each players season of work. To kick things off we are going to start with the ace of the Atlanta Braves, Max Fried.
The battle to stay on the field
Unfortunately, we don't have a lot to cover for Fried's 2023 season because he was battling injury quite literally since opening day. Max was announced as the opening day starter in late March and took the hill on the road against the Nationals. Max went just four innings in Washington before having to exit with hamstring tightness.
That was his first IL stint. When he came back in mid-April he would make three typical solid Max Fried starts. However, on his May 5th outing against the Baltimore Orioles he gave up seven runs, and after the game he was put on the IL once again, this time with a forearm strain.
Once Fried made his way back from that injury in August he returned with a vengeance as he threw six innings of shutout ball at Wrigley Field. Max would continue to be his usual ace-like self across seven more starts in August and September, including a dominate seven innings of shutout baseball partnered with ten strikeouts against the mighty Dodgers.
Sadly, the final injury blow for Max in 2023 came in mid-September after his start against the Phillies as he battled a blister, something he has done quite frequently in his baseball career. As the case with all of Fried's injuries in 2023, Atlanta handled the last with extreme precaution.
The treatment to Fried's hand went well enough to allow him to start game two of the NLDS against Philadelphia. As Braves fans know by know that is the only game the Braves won that series. On the year Fried posted an 8-1 record, 2.55 ERA, 3.14 FIP, 3.38 SIERA, and 1.9 fWAR via Fangraphs in 14 starts.
What's in store?
Fried still excelled in limiting hard contact, and limiting baserunners as a whole. His baseball savant page is littered with red circles. The big thing heading into 2024 for Fried is obviously health considering how last season went. His number one concern will be making as many starts as he possibly can.
After that who knows, because Fried will be a free agent come the 2024 offseason. Many Braves fans have fallen in love with watching Max pitch, but come next season we could be in for the finale. Stay tuned at House That Hank Built as we will continue to churn out all of these 2023 player reviews in the winter months.