‘Folty’ bounces back with solid start for Braves

Braves pitcher Mike Foltynewicz is a big right-hander with a power arm but he said he’s come to realize that he needs to dial it down sometimes in the big leagues.

“When I came in to pro ball I never thought anything about the mental side,” Foltynewicz said before facing the Brewers on Wednesday. “Now it’s probably the biggest part of my game right now. It’s slowly starting to get there. A couple more times I think it will start sinking in. I get the adrenaline out there and it’s a different feeling.”

During the Braves’ 3-2 extra-innings loss to the Brewers, Foltynewicz got another lesson in how a brief lapse in focus can lead to bad results.

Foltynewicz got ahead 0-2 against outfielder Keon Broxton before walking him to lead off the fifth inning. Pitcher Junior Guerra was on deck and Broxton entered the game with no big-league hits and 13 strikeouts in 22 plate appearances.

After Guerra sacrificed to move Broxton to third, Foltynewicz threw a wild pitch that advanced Broxton to third. Jonathan Villa followed with a fly out to deep center field to score Broxton.

“I think I might have just excited I got him 0-2 and I tried to blow by him and tried to make the slider even more nasty than it is,” Foltynewicz said. ” I just kind of get a little amped up sometimes. That run was pushed across on a wild pitch, if we don’t do that the game might have had a different outcome. But I have to keep being aggressive. I can’t let that stuff scare me.”

That was the only run allowed in 5 2/3 innings by Foltynewicz. Gordon Beckham’s pinch-hit, two-run homer in the bottom of the fifth assured Foltynewicz wouldn’t take the loss but the Brewers won on Jonathan Villa’s go-ahead RBI single in the 14th inning.

Foltynewicz allowed just four hits and struck out seven with four walks. In his previous start Foltynewicz allowed five runs over three innings at the Pirates.

“It was a good day today,” he said. “My body felt good, my arm felt good the whole day. I went out there and put it in my mind to be aggressive. The defense saved me tonight. Other than the strikeouts, the ball was play and they weren’t easy outs. It was a good game but we came out on the wrong end.”