WASHINGTON -- As Mike Minor and Gavin Floyd were reminded on Thursday night, Major League pitchers can often be left frustrated by the results produced during a Minor League rehab assignment.
But instead of concerning himself with the lines the veteran pitchers produced, Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez was simply happy to hear that both hurlers completed their respective outings in pain-free fashion.
Over the past week, there was reason to believe Minor and Floyd might both join Atlanta's starting rotation during April's fourth week. But Gonzalez is now indicating that Minor could make his season debut around that time, and Floyd's debut could occur the following week.
Minor has gone more than a month without feeling the left shoulder discomfort that plagued him during the early portion of Spring Training. He allowed three earned runs and surrendered four hits while completing two innings for Double-A Mississippi in Thursday night's loss to Mobile. After striking out the first two Mobile batters he faced, Minor surrendered four consecutive hits -- a home run, a triple and two doubles. But he ended his 39-pitch outing with three more strikeouts in a perfect second inning.
Floyd, who is attempting to return from Tommy John elbow reconstruction surgery, allowed two earned runs, issued two walks and surrendered a pair of hits in 1 1/3 innings for Triple-A Gwinnett in Thursday's loss to Durham. His 42-pitch outing was marred by Kevin Kiermaier's two-run homer in the second inning.
Braves only too happy to add depth in Beato
WASHINGTON -- The Braves opened this season with a relief corps that included three pitchers who had never thrown a pitch at the Major League level. In an attempt to add some experience and depth to their bullpen, they took advantage of the chance to claim Pedro Beato after the Reds placed the reliever on waivers earlier this week.
"Any time a pitcher comes available through waivers or an option, when you have a chance to get him, get him," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "It's a 162-game season, and you're going to need [as many pitchers as you can have]."
Beato has made just 21 Major League appearances since posting a 4.30 ERA in the 60 games he pitched for the Mets in 2011. The Reds designated the 27-year-old right-handed reliever for assignment on Sunday, and the Braves claimed him on Wednesday.
"This is a great place to land," said Beato, who was preparing to begin this season with Triple-A Louisville when he received word that the Braves had claimed him.
The Braves optioned left-handed reliever Ryan Buchter to Triple-A Gwinnett to make room on their 25-man roster for Beato. Cory Gearrin, who is dealing with a sprained right elbow, was placed on the 60-day disabled list to make room on Atlanta's 40-man roster for Beato.
As he was introducing himself to his new Braves teammates before Friday afternoon's game against the Nationals, Beato said he was surprised he had been designated for assignment. He surrendered 11 hits and issued one walk while compiling a 3.00 ERA in nine Cactus League appearances for the Reds.
"I was throwing well," Beato said. "I had one rough outing. I was figuring out some mechanical stuff. Then I finally figured it out. It was going well after that, and I was pretty surprised that I got put on waivers. But it's part of the game and stuff happens."
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.