Braves shut down Mike Soroka because of right-shoulder inflammation

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Soroka delivers in the sixth inning of a spring training baseball game against the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, in Fort Myers, Fla. Soroka was making his first appearance of the spring after tearing his Achilles tendon last August. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Soroka delivers in the sixth inning of a spring training baseball game against the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, in Fort Myers, Fla. Soroka was making his first appearance of the spring after tearing his Achilles tendon last August. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Credit: John Bazemore

Credit: John Bazemore

Braves starter Mike Soroka’s comeback attempt has hit a snag. Soroka experienced right-shoulder discomfort during his recent simulated game and was shut down for two weeks, manager Brian Snitker said Wednesday.

Soroka has been working his way back from a torn Achilles suffered in his third start last season. He was expected to rejoin the rotation later this month if he continued progressing well. Instead, he suffered a setback Tuesday at the team’s alternate training site, leaving his simulated start after one inning.

“He has some right-shoulder inflammation,” Snitker said. “There’s no structural damage, but they’re going to shut him down for two weeks and treat him and get back at it.”

Snitker added he’s “a little bit” concerned: “I’m concerned for him. I hate he’s done all this work (and this happens). I don’t know how many of these things you’ve been around, but they don’t often go as planned. There’s always bumps in the road.

“I think the fact there’s no structural damage, it’s just something they’ll calm down and get him back going. I told him, ‘Things happen for a reason.’ He’ll continue to work hard and be diligent in what he’s doing. You just never know why things happen. Rarely rarely do these things go accordingly. There’s always bumps in the road. I think that’s what this is.”

Soroka, 23, is one of baseball’s best young pitchers when healthy. He had a 2.68 ERA in 29 starts in 2019, when he earned All-Star honors during his first full season. He’s expected to be a pillar in the Braves rotation when he gets back on the field, joining Max Fried and Ian Anderson to form what the franchise hopes is one of the sport’s better pitching trios over the next handful of years.

The Braves have multiple pitchers capable of filling the rotation vacancy. Bryse Wilson seemed to win the fifth starter job with a strong spring, and he could join the rotation as early as next week. Huascar Ynoa pitched five scoreless innings Wednesday and showed he should be a factor as well. The team also has Kyle Wright, who came on strong at the end of last season, at the alternate training site.

In Other News