Mike Minor threw two scoreless innings for the Atlanta Braves in their Grapefruit League opener against the Detroit Tigers, but the Braves were held hitless until the eighth inning and were shutout 2-0.
In 14 pitches, Minor struck out the side in the first inning by carving up Austin Jackson, Brennan Boesch and Miguel Cabrera.
“I didn’t feel like I pitched that great to strike out the side,” Minor said. “They were swinging a lot. In midseason form they’re letting those balls go, a couple of inches outside.”
Minor also gave up a leadoff hit to Prince Fielder, Fielder's first of a 2-for-2 day, and walked Brandon Inge with two outs in the second inning, but he managed to work around those to keep his outing scoreless.
“That was a pretty good outing, just because my arm felt good,” Minor said. “I didn’t feel any fatigue really in the two innings I threw. I threw a lot of strikes in the first inning, but the second inning I struggled a little bit. Still, it feels good to get out of it with no runs. Those guys are really good.”
Anthony Varvaro gave up a leadoff homer to Jerad Head in the third inning, giving the Tigers all they needed, as the Braves did not register a hit until the eighth inning. That came via non-roster invitee Jordan Parazz off Chris Bootcheck.
“We hit some balls hard at people and we lost 2-nothing, but that’s a good outing overall,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “I thought it was a pretty good baseball game.”
Rookie shortstop Tyler Pastornicky went 0-for-2 with a strikeout in his debut in the starting role for the Braves.
The Braves will travel to Lakeland, Fla., to play the Tigers at 1:05 p.m. Randall Delgado and Julio Teheran will take the mound for the Braves opposite Max Scherzer. Highly touted prospect Andrelton Simmons will make the trip, but the only regulars who will go to Lakeland will be Pastornicky, Martin Prado and Matt Diaz.
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