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It sucks to be Yohan Flande right now

Apr 3, 2012, 7:16 PM EDT

Yohan Flande Getty Images

The Braves got down to 25 players Monday, demoting pitchers Cory Gearrin and Julio Teheran to Triple-A as part of their cuts. Left as the 12th pitcher on the staff was Yohan Flande, who appeared all set to make his major league debut after spending six years in the minors.

Then came the bad news today: Atlanta signed Nationals castoff Chad Durbin to a major league contract. Flande is on his way back to Triple-A after all.

Flande, 26, entered camp as a big long shot to make the team, but he allowed just three runs — one earned — and eight hits in 12 1/3 innings for the spring. He had a 4.01 ERA in 19 starts and 14 relief appearances for Triple-A Gwinnett last year.

Durbin, 34, was cut by the Nats after allowing eight runs — four earned — and 21 hits in 15 1/3 innings this spring. He was a member of Cleveland’s pen last season and had a 5.53 ERA in 68 1/3 innings.

Their recent changes leaves the Braves pitching staff skewing quite a bit older than expected. Durbin and fellow new acquisition Livan Hernandez will both work in middle relief, giving the team veteran fallbacks in case Randall Delgado or any of their other starters struggle early on.

  1. momeld - Apr 3, 2012 at 7:23 PM

    You don’t mess with the Johan.

  2. bobulated - Apr 3, 2012 at 7:33 PM

    He’ll be back up soon if Durbin pitches true to form; don’t understand why they didn’t keep the younger, cheaper option who had the better spring.

    • cltjump - Apr 3, 2012 at 8:53 PM

      Because ATL management can be a clusterfudge of idiotic opinions.

  3. scatterbrian - Apr 3, 2012 at 9:06 PM

    “Their recent changes leaves the Braves pitching staff skewing quite a bit older than expected.”

    …which will likely precipitate Flande’s debut this season.

  4. js20011041 - Apr 3, 2012 at 9:47 PM

    I think the best option would be to both send Flande down and not sign Durbin. I will never understand why teams are carrying 12 and 13 pitchers. It wasn’t that long ago that teams were only carrying 10. I know the game hasn’t changed that much in the last 10 or 15 years. Besides the endless parade of pitching changes, this obsession with massive pitching staffs just makes the game less interesting. Fewer teams platoon because you simply can’t afford to give one of your 3 free bench spots to a player who can say, only be effective against left handed pitchers. I really think that MLB needs to create some kind of rule to curb the pitching changes. Either limit the number of pitchers on a staff to 11 or force pitchers to pitch to multiple batters. But something needs to be done.

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