In a surprise move, Braves names Mike Foltynewicz for an assignment

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The Braves will surprisingly nominate right-hander Mike Foltynewicz for an assignment, manager Brian Snitker told the media following Atlanta’s 14-5 loss to the Rays on Monday. Right-hander Chad Sobotka will replace Foltynewicz on the Braves’ active roster.

Foltynewicz, 28, started that game at Tropicana Field and allowed six earned runs and three homers in 3 1/3 innings. During this time, he took out three and walked four.

DFA Foltynewicz’s move means the Braves will have a limited window to trade him – likely for a minimum return – or place him on irrevocable waivers. In other words, Foltynewicz’s days with Atlanta will soon be over. Once he is DFA, he will be removed from the Braves’ 40-player and 60-player roster.

The decision highlights Foltynewicz’s precipitous decline. He was originally drafted by the Astros as the 19th overall pick in 2010, and in January 2015, the Braves acquired him as part of the trade that sent Evan Gattis to Houston. Heading into his final season with the Astros organization, Foltynewicz was considered by most to be one of the Top 50 prospects.

Foltynewicz pitched solid for the Braves ahead of his 2018 breakout campaign, when he recorded a 2.85 ERA with 202 strikeouts in 183 innings. As a result, he finished eighth in the NL Cy Young poll, and Foltynewicz looked like a young centerpiece for the Braves. However, Foltynewicz encountered some trouble with his arms and then a big loss of speed. Foltynewicz in 2014 boasted of a fastball that averaged over 98 mph. That figure gradually dropped to below 95 mph last season, and on Monday he was sometimes below 90 mph with his four seams. As Snitker put it after announcing the decision, “His business just wasn’t there. ”

Considering how Foltynewicz recently posted such a promise, there is no doubt that teams will be lining up to pick up a flyer on him. However, against Foltynewicz, it’s the results, the things, and the fact that the organization that knows the most about him is about to let go.

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