Is Iglesias All That Healthy? Evaluating The Minter Decision

braves ninth inning
So. We may or may not have a problem. *Update: Iglesias had pitched on back to back days and Braves just wanted to give him a rest. Is it time for concern though about the Braves bullpen?

The Braves made odd decisions (which cost them a game out west), but what happens now? Let’s walk back what happened.

Our Atlanta Braves faced a challenging decision in the ninth inning of their recent game against the Seattle Mariners. With a narrow lead, Braves manager Brian Snitker chose to use setup man A.J. Minter instead of closer Raisel Iglesias, leading to a loss after a late-game turnaround by the Mariners.

The game was a tight one, characterized by a strong pitching duel between Braves starter Max Fried and Mariners’ Bryce Miller. Going into the ninth inning with a one-run lead, the Braves called on Minter to close the game, but he gave up key hits that turned the game in favor of the Mariners.

Snitker’s choice to use Minter over Iglesias was odd BUT as we later found out was influenced by Iglesias’ recent workload, having pitched in two consecutive games prior. Despite Minter being on a scoreless streak, his performance in this critical moment did not hold, resulting in a Mariners’ victory led by a Mitch Garver two-run homer.

Looking back at Iglesias’ performances when pitching on consecutive days shows mixed results. The article details four specific instances in 2023 where Iglesias pitched on back-to-back days. Which was, in all fairness, hit and miss, that streak includes games against the Cleveland Guardians, Pittsburgh Pirates, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Philadelphia Phillies.

Overall, the decision reflects a broader trend in MLB of careful pitcher management, aiming to avoid using relievers three days in a row due to concerns about effectiveness and injury risk. This strategy is backed by recent data and sports science that advocate for resting players to maintain performance levels.

The choice to use Minter was met with mixed reactions from fans and analysts. Some supported the decision based on the need to rest Iglesias, while others questioned whether it was the right move in a critical moment. The outcome has sparked discussions about bullpen management and the importance of decision-making in high-pressure situations.

So where do we go from here?

Granted this incident underscores the unpredictable nature of baseball, where even well-thought-out decisions can lead to unexpected outcomes. It highlights the necessity for teams to balance short-term results with long-term health and effectiveness of their players. But nevertheless WTF? How are we supposed

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