The Atlanta Braves continued to bolster their starting pitcher staff on Tuesday with the addition of 37-year old RHP Charlie Morton and fans can begin to get excited about the damage a healthy starting rotation can do for the Braves in 2021.
The excitement became more real even before Morton was signed when 23-year old Mike Soroka, posted an Instagram video on Monday of him throwing flat grounds just three months after tearing his right Achilles tendon on Aug. 3 that ended his 2020 season.
“I’m hoping to be pushing our [medical] staff,” Soroka told MLB.com. “I know they’re going to want to hold me back and make sure everything is done. But I’m hoping to be feeling good enough at the four- or five-month period where I’m kind of pushing the envelope and I know I will.”
Before Soroka was injured in his third start of the year, he had already established himself as the ace of Atlanta's pitching staff.
As a rookie in 2019, Soroka had the National League's third-best ERA (2.68) and was second in the NL Rookie of the Year voting.
The Braves do not expect to have a timetable for Soroka's return until at least January, but if he is able to make his way back for the start of the season or even May, Atlanta has a potential starting rotation of him, Morton, Max Fried, Ian Anderson and Drew Smyly.
If that rotation stays healthy, the expectations for Atlanta will be very high after they made it all the way to the NLCS last season with a banged up rotation.