After struggling for much of the 2017 season, should Atlanta Braves fans be worried about their best pitcher, Julio Teheran?
Every Atlanta Braves fan understood that the 2017 season was going to potentially be another long and frustrating year. Even though the organization was going to start playing its young superstars at the big league level, everyone knew that even Dansby Swanson and Ozzie Albies would have their down moments.
That being said, what we didn’t see coming was that Julio Teheran, the team’s supposed ace, would have his worst statical season in the big leagues.
Now that Teheran’s 2017 season is over, we can start to evaluate what he was able to accomplish over the last six months. Needless to say, it wasn’t very good.
According to Baseball Reference, the two-time All-Star posted a career-worst mark in almost every major statistical pitching category in 2017. Not only did he give up more home runs and earned runs than he ever had in his career, but he had fewer strikeouts and a 4.49 ERA – again, his worst earned run average to date.
More from Atlanta Braves
- Stock Up, Stock Down: Braves, Yankees, Cubs, Red Sox
- Atlanta Braves: The 4 players who are on the franchise’s Mount Rushmore
- Breaking down the NL MVP race: Ronald Acuna Jr. vs. Freddie Freeman
- Atlanta Braves 3 reasons not to panic over August pitching struggles
- MLB trade deadline: Atlanta Braves coast as they await pitching help
Therefore, should Braves fans be concerned with how Teheran pitched in 2017? In my opinion, I would have to say yes, but for different reasons than you may think.
I believe every Atlanta baseball fan must come to the understanding that their “ace” is probably never going to be a dominant force on the mound. Yes, Teheran is one of the Braves’ best pitchers in the starting rotation, but he’s not going to be the guy to lead them to a World Series title.
If there’s anything to be disappointed about surrounding Teheran in 2017, it’s more on us than it is on him. As fans, we’ve labelled the seven-year veteran something he’s truly not – one of the game’s best starting pitchers.
With the plethora of pitching talent coming up from the minor leagues, Braves fans should be nothing but encouraged moving forward. Atlanta will have a true “ace” on the mound one of these days and Teheran will be one heck of an addition to the staff behind that guy.
Until then, let’s not label Teheran something that he truly isn’t. He is one of Atlanta’s best starting pitchers, but should never have been called their “ace.”