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Simplify Your Life by Hitting the Right Targets

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports stands out as a unique case; he is a valuable homegrown player for the Braves who opted not to sign a long-term, team-friendly contract extension. This departure from the norm raises eyebrows considering the team’s recent history. As a result, Fried is set to become a free agent after the current season. However, despite preparing for a future without Fried, the Braves heavily rely on his contributions in the present.

With [ppp1] sidelined for the season, the Braves’ pitching rotation now features Fried, alongside two established veterans, and a former reliever transitioning to a starting role. The fifth spot in the rotation remains a work in progress. While the overall outlook is promising, the team faces tighter pitching constraints compared to recent weeks, reflecting a common trend across baseball with many teams missing key starters.

The initial concerns arose when Fried struggled in his first two starts, totaling just five innings. During these outings, he yielded 12 hits and 11 runs, with 10 earned runs, inflating his ERA to 18.00. While the Braves’ offense is potent, expecting them to consistently provide 18 runs per game for their ace pitcher is unrealistic.

Fortunately, Fried bounced back in his third start, pitching 6 13 innings and allowing only one earned run. Despite a shaky ending to the game, he managed to cut his ERA in half, hinting at a potential turnaround in his performance.

Reflecting on his recent outing, Fried emphasized the importance of regaining his confidence and adopting an aggressive pitching approach. Despite not fitting the mold of a power pitcher, Fried’s effectiveness lies in his ability to pitch strategically around the edges of the strike zone.

Analyzing Fried’s pitching patterns between 2021 and 2023 reveals his proficiency in inducing swings outside the strike zone, particularly in the shadow and chase zones. These areas test hitters’ discipline and often lead to favorable outcomes for Fried.

While Fried’s early struggles raised concerns, his performance against Miami showcased marked improvement, with encouraging statistics in key pitching zones. The fine margins between success and failure in baseball are evident in Fried’s fluctuating fortunes, underscoring the need for consistency throughout the season.

In conclusion, Fried’s journey exemplifies the delicate balance in pitching success and the pivotal role confidence plays in a pitcher’s performance. As the season progresses, maintaining this balance will be crucial for Fried’s continued success and the Braves’ competitiveness.