According to MLB Network insider Ken Rosenthal, the Atlanta Braves have signed 29-year-old LHP Ross Detwiler to a Major League deal. This year hasn’t been kind to Detwiler, who previously pitched with the Texas Rangers this season before being released earlier this week. Ross will be joining a Braves bullpen that is looking for some stability after losing closer Jason Grilli to a season-ending Achilles injury. Throughout Detwiler’s career he has shown the ability to serve different roles for a pitching staff, so if he is able to be effective once again, he could really help out a Braves bullpen that currently has an ugly 4.40 ERA.
In 17 games this season, 7 being starts, Detwiler has put together a rough 7.12 ERA with a 1.91 WHIP. The former Washington National has just seemed overmatched whenever stepping on the mound this season. He has been struggling to locate pitches, keep the ball in the park, and even get consistent strikeouts. Opposing batters currently have a .343 batting average against Ross, which just shows how well they’re seeing the ball out of his hand. Switching from the rotation to the bullpen didn’t do Detwiler any favors either, as his stuff just doesn’t seem to be what it once was. Whatever helped make him a solid pitcher in Washington has to be figured out quickly, because if it isn’t, he may not have another opportunity in the Majors for some time.
Before being traded to the Rangers over the winter, Detwiler had succeeded while working out of the bullpen and in the starting rotation. The lefty was great depth for some Washington teams that dealt with different pitching injuries over the years. From 2009-2014, Detwiler compiled a solid 3.82 ERA over 471 innings for both some winning and losing teams. Maybe Texas just wasn’t the right place for Ross, and a change of scenery will be exactly what he needs to get his career back on track.
Along with Detwiler, RHP Jason Frasor was also signed to give the Braves bullpen another boost. If Frasor and Detwiler are able to contribute in a positive way while in Atlanta, it could really help them hold onto some more leads later in games. Since trading all-star closer Craig Kimbrel right before the season, the bullpen has struggled to be even a little consistent. A few more proven veterans added into the mix might help solidify this bullpen for the first time in 2015.