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Braves call up 20-year-old Arodys Vizcaino for bullpen help

Aug 10, 2011, 9:53 AM EST

2011 XM All-Star Futures Game Getty Images

Atlanta released veteran reliever Scott Proctor this morning and filled his roster spot by calling up 20-year-old phenom Arodys Vizcaino from Triple-A.

Viczaino was acquired from the Yankees in the December of 2009 deal for Javier Vazquez and cracked Baseball America‘s top 100 prospects list coming into the season despite spending most of last year at low Single-A.

He’s blitzed through the minors this season, going from high Single-A to Double-A to Triple-A. And now the hard-throwing right-hander is in the majors three months before his 21st birthday.

Vizcaino has been working out of the bullpen since arriving at Triple-A last month, allowing just one earned run in seven innings, so the Braves are looking at him as a late-inning relief option down the stretch.  And the potential is certainly there to dominate alongside the two-headed Craig Kimbrel-Jonny Venters monster, as Vizcaino racked up 100 strikeouts in 97 total innings between the three levels and held opponents to a .234 batting average.

  1. Clinton Manitoba - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:00 AM

    With Proctor gone, that was addition by subtraction, and then it gets even better throwing Vizcaino in there.

  2. Chris Fiorentino - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:00 AM

    Just in time for Fredi Gonzalez to wear his arm out before the end of the season…

    • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:19 AM

      OK, I’m sorry…I guess he isn’t wearing out Venters and Kimbrel, right?

      • Kevin S. - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:34 AM

        I think you just evoked a lot of bitter feelings, and they took it out on your post.

    • bobulated - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:58 AM

      The whole point of bringing up someone competent and cutting Proctor is to stop wearing out O’Ventbrel. If Moylan can back back strong the Braves bullpen will be very tough while also allowing some rest for their 3 main guys at the back end.

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:03 AM

        O’Ventbrel? I didn’t know that Venters and Kimbrel were Irish.

      • Kevin S. - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:08 AM

        O’Flarhety.

  3. drmonkeyarmy - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:01 AM

    Is this the guy who gave up the HR to Kipnis in the Futures Game?

    • Clinton Manitoba - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:14 AM

      That was Teheran

      • drmonkeyarmy - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:15 AM

        Thank you.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:14 AM

      No, seriously. It wasn’t meant as a crack at the kid, I was just wondering if that was him.

      • Clinton Manitoba - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:20 AM

        http://tinyurl.com/3av3wo6

      • drmonkeyarmy - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:28 AM

        No reason to be a jerk about things.

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:31 AM

        Doctor,

        That’s was actually kind of funny. I clicked on Clinton Manitoba’s link after seeing what you wrote. Sorry to say I laughed my ass off.

      • Ari Collins - Aug 10, 2011 at 12:11 PM

        love love love http://lmgtfy.com/

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 10, 2011 at 12:21 PM

        Lol, Ari. You are a wild and crazy guy with that link.

  4. FC - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:13 AM

    Aww man, now what am I going to do with all those Proctologist jokes with the Braves?

  5. halladaysbiceps - Aug 10, 2011 at 10:27 AM

    Too bad the Braves released Scott Proctor. I was looking forward to the Phillies smacking him around some more when they play the Braves again.

    • seanmk - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:09 AM

      phillies better start calling up de fratus and/or schwimer for the stretch run and playoffs to compete. the phillies bullpen aren’t exactly world beaters right now and are going to need upgrades at the herndon and kendrick spots. i trust only madson and bastardo and maybe stutes. with worley being there as the long man/4th starter incase oswalt doesn’t improve, you need more power arms not the groundball low K guys they have now in kendrick and herndon

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:15 AM

        I understand there are a couple of minor concerns in the bullpen. But, all of that is negated because of the 4 horsemen. When you have 4 guys to take you to the 7th, 8th, or complete the game at any given start, this bullpen, as currently constructed, is more than adequate.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:18 AM

        Seriously? Compete how? Do you mean for the 3 or 4 innings during each playoff series where Doc, Lee, Cole and Oswalt do not pitch? Puh-leeze. Relax already. The Phillies bullpen, barring injury, is pretty set. Madson has been lights-out and the Bastid/Stutes combination has also ben pretty solid.

        You really are worried about upgrading the “herndon and kendrick spots”? For what? Those guys won’t see a sniff of a pressure situation in the playoffs. You will need a crane to get Doc and Cliff off the mound in the playoffs.

      • seanmk - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:41 AM

        i certainly hope you are right, but you really want to stick to not improving an area that you can reasonably improve? what is the downside to replacing those two pitchers. I’m not sure if i’m misreading you but are you opposed to the idea of bringing either or both of those two to see if they are better then herndon/kendrick/stutes? I certainly hope that hamels lee halladay are beasts but it’s the playoffs, if any of those guys gets knocked around do you really want to put your playoff hopes in kendrick and herndon?

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:57 AM

        If Doc, Lee or Hamels get “knocked around” then there really isn’t much hope for the Phillies in that game anyway. I have faith that Kendrick can pitch fine when the team is trailing. It’s when he is handed a 2 or 3 run lead into the 6th or 7th inning that I start getting nervous about Mr. Kendrick. Thankfully, he won’t be needed in that position anymore the rest of this season, barring injury. And barring two injuries, he definitely won’t be in that position come playoff time.

        Guys like Herndon probably won’t even be on the playoff roster so don’t worry about him. Those guys will get their chance in September when the rosters expand.

        NLDS: Doc, Lee, Hamels, Oswalt, Doc

        NLCS: Doc, Lee, Hamels, Oswalt, Doc, Lee, Hamels

        W.S.: Doc, Lee, Hamels, Oswalt, Doc, Lee, Hamels

        What are you worried about?????

      • seanmk - Aug 10, 2011 at 12:11 PM

        the theme of the 2008 playoffs was the phillies had the best bullpen, the theme of the 2009 playoffs were the yankees had the best bullpen, the theme of the 2010 giants was the best bullpen, such as the sanchez game were he was knocked out after 2 innings, and the bullpen was lights out. i agree that if you lose with your aces then you lose with your best players but you still need to have contingency in case one has a bad start, to not do so is planing to fail

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 10, 2011 at 12:15 PM

        I hear that but remember that Lincecum and Baumgartner pitched in that game, so it wasn’t all just bullpen guys. Also remember that it was Oswalt in that one. I can’t wait until this year, because instead of relying on Oswalt to help the Phillies keep the series alive, it will be a guy like Lee or Hamels. It’s going to be freaking awesome.

    • halladaysbiceps - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:50 AM

      Sean, I can’t speak for Chris, but I would bring Schwimmer up immediately to replace Herndon. Herndon has shown me nothing during the season. The only reason that they will not do this is because Herndon at least has some MLB experience. Schwimmer has zero. They will not put a kid who has never pitched in a major league game into a playoff situation.

      Kendrick will only be for long relief, period. The only way he comes in is if one of the 4 aces gets hurt or one of them gets bombed in the 2nd or 3rd innings. And I’m talking bombed. Like 9 or 10 runs bombed.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 10, 2011 at 12:05 PM

        Assuming no injuries, and assuming Polanco comes back later September, the Playoff Roster will probably only have 11 pitchers and 14 position players:

        Ruiz
        Schnieder
        Howard
        Utley
        Rollins
        Polanco
        Martinez
        Valdez
        Ibanez
        Victorino
        Pence
        Mayberry, Jr.
        Brown
        Gload

        Doc
        Lee
        Hamels
        Oswalt
        Worley
        Kendrick
        Lidge
        Stutes
        Bastid
        Madson
        11th Pitcher who won’t get a sniff of action the entire playoffs

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 10, 2011 at 12:12 PM

        Agreed, Chris. Good job doing the homework with this. Herndon is the odd man out, especially if Contreras somehow magically comes back. But, your roster is sound, barring any waiver wire deal that that the Ninja could still possibly make, of course.

  6. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:54 AM

    So, Beachy had struck out Buck twice in the game, and the guy is batting .230. Beachy had thrown 106 pitches and he gets yanked? Let the kid pitch Fredi. That’s the best way to save your friggin’ bullpen.

  7. seanmk - Aug 10, 2011 at 11:57 AM

    last year they used bastardo in the key spot in game 4. they can use rookies. plus as an example last year two games against the giants were lost because the hitting first off and the bullpen second off. the hitting doesn’t really need improvement or at least a bench bat but that is marginal. the bullpen can use at least one more arm, if i’m comparing them depthwise to either the braves/giants/diamondbacks, i’d say it’s one area that could be improved. so if you can then why not do it. a krod/wainwright type guy never hurts to have in the playoffs

    • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 10, 2011 at 12:12 PM

      The Phillies lost to the Giants for two simple reasons…one, Cody Ross and two, Game 4. Period.

      Unless you think Cody Ross is going to channel his inner-Babe Ruth again, or unless you think that Oswalt is going to pitch poorly in game 4, like Heavy B did, then there is no reason to panic over the bullpen. Especially, as you can see in the playoff roster that I put out there above, the 11th pitcher won’t get a sniff. Bastid/Stutes/Lidge/Madson are THE GUYS for a game where the Phillies are winning or tied. If losing, then KK gets his chance. And if disaster strikes and someone gets hurt or rocked, then yeah, Mr. 11 gets his chance. If you want that to be someone other than Herndon, I have no problem with that at all. I just don’t care much about it because with these 4 starters, I don’t foresee any need for anyone outside of Bastid/Stutes/Lidge/Madson. Game 4, with Heavy B sucking ass like he did, killed the bullpen for the series. That was a game the Phillies had no business losing after they put up the 4-spot in the 5th inning.

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