What do the Braves lose in Soroka? Can the rotation get (W)right for the postseason?

The Braves may have some stability on the way for the starting rotation. After Soroka’s latest injury, what will the Braves miss from him?

St. Louis Cardinals v Atlanta Braves
St. Louis Cardinals v Atlanta Braves / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

After leaving his last start early on Tuesday, Atlanta Braves pitcher Michael Soroka has been placed on the injured list yet again and will not pitch for the remainder of the 2023 season. This is disheartening for a player like Soroka who has had to battle injury practically his whole professional career. With Soroka no longer an option, how much have the Braves really lost? 

We have all been told at some point and time in our lives that the truth hurts. That is the case for Michael Soroka here. We all wanted a great comeback story for Soroka but the truth of the matter is, the Braves don’t really lose anything without him. All that has vanished is the opportunity for a feel-good recovery story. 

Soroka had a decent amount of success at the Triple-A level in 2023. He went 4-4 with a 3.41 ERA and posted a WHIP of 1.07. Every time he got called up to the majors, it seemed that the pressure got to him. With the Braves across 32.1 innings, Soroka had a 2-2 record with a 6.40 ERA and a WHIP of 1.49. He issued 12 walks across those 32.1 innings which is quite a bit for a pitcher who prides himself on control. 

Kyle Wright is most likely one rehab start away from rejoining the Braves starting rotation after being sidelined due to injury for the majority of the season. The expectation is that Wright will hold down the fifth starting spot in the rotation to provide some stability in addition to Max Fried, Spencer Strider, Charlie Morton, and Bryce Elder. 

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With Wright being out for so long, his effectiveness may still be in question. A season ago, Wright led the National League with 21 wins. He posted a 3.19 ERA to go along with his 21-5 record. However, prior to that season, Wright had some severe struggles of his own at the major league level. The Braves are hoping Wright will return to his 2022 self but it may not hurt for them to have another option in place for the fifth starter. 

This slot in the rotation is set to appear in the series finale against the Pirates on Sunday. We will see if Kyle Wright is back with the major league club or if Brian Snitker calls on another spot starter.