Morning Phil Up – 3/23/2014 – National League Roundup


Julio Teheran. Image Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

A few links from around the National League:

Tomahawk Take – Julio Teheran is officially your Atlanta Braves Opening Day Starter!

The Braves have announced that Julio Teheran will take the ball for them on Opening Day. It is speculated that the Braves will use a four-man rotation through the early part of the season, until recent signee Ervin Santana is presumably ready to join the team. With only four pitchers in the rotation, the Braves will likely start out with eight men in the rotation. However, the identities of the pitchers who will take those spots is still in question.

Miami Herald – Miami Marlins know healthy, consistent rotation will be critical

The Marlins probably wouldn’t have been contenders in 2013 even if everyone remained healthy. But once they began to lose members of their rotation due to injuries and incompetence, their fate was sealed. So far, the Marlins’ rotation appears to be healthy, and that gives the team at least a little bit of hope heading into the season. The starters have been performing well in Spring Training, and it looks like they might be able to be counted on as a team strength in 2014.

Mets TodayShould Mets bat pitcher eighth?

There is a bit of a debate about how the New York Mets should configure their lineup. Considering the Mets’ shortstops are not good hitters, would it be worth it to have the Mets bat the pitcher eighth? Theoretically, many of the at bats that would go to the pitchers are taken by pinch hitters, so the team would often actually end up with a better hitter in that spot. In the end, it is difficult to determine if the move would make much – if any – difference over the course of a season.

Washington Nationals Team Site – Gio still working out kinks, but pleased overall

Nationals pitcher Gio Gonzalez wasn’t at his sharpest in his latest Spring Training start. His command wasn’t quite where it needed to be early in the game, and as a result, he needed to throw 82 pitches to complete his 4.2 innings of work. But overall, Gonzalez left the start feeling okay about the start. He felt he threw his changeup well, and he was also able to successfully cover first base – a problem that plagued him in 2013.