No one can say that Bryce Elder didn’t give the Braves exactly what they needed from him in his spot start against the Marlins, but the reality was that it was always going to be a spot start. Barring injury, the Braves current rotation seems to be pretty set and Elder’s time with the big league club was going to be fleeting...at least this time.
However, the corresponding roster move was still worth monitoring as Atlanta seemed to have several options available to them for a fresh arm in the bullpen. Today’s move also happens to give us some clarity as to how one bullpen arm is doing after a scary incident on the field.
The #Braves today reinstated RHP Jackson Stephens from the 7-day injured list after optioning RHP Bryce Elder to Triple-A Gwinnett following last night’s game.— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) September 4, 2022
Jackson Stephens was placed on the 7-day concussion injured list on August 27 after being hit by a line drive in the head. While there wasn’t anything immediately concerning for his long-term health in the aftermath (other than the obvious “he got hit in the head hard by a baseball”), it is still nice to see that he is healthy enough to be cleared to play again. Stephens has struggled of late, but he is also the type of guy the Braves want to be adding with this move as a reliever who can throw multiple innings if need be.
As for Elder, he heads back to Gwinnett knowing that his last two starts in the big leagues (both against Miami for what its worth) were gems. He will continue to try and refine his command and try to limit the long ball, the latter of which has been a struggle for him in the minors even lately. However, it certainly seems like the Braves are still looking at him as a rotation option going forward and that is good news for him.