Lucas Sims will move to the Braves bullpen after going  2-5 with a 5.97 ERA in his first seven starts. (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Gohara to stay in 6-man rotation, Sims to bullpen

The ever-evolving and youthful Braves rotation will be a six-man unit for now, with Luiz Gohara moving in and fellow rookie Lucas Sims moving out.

Braves manager Brian Snitker said Gohara, a left-handed prospect who was to have started against the Rangers on Tuesday night in his major league debut, will stay in the rotation and make his next turn Sept. 12 in a series opener at Washington.

Tuesday’s game was rained out and will be made up Wednesday as part of a split doubleheader, with Gohara to make his debut with a start in the 1:35 p.m. first game.

Gohara gets call up, start all in one day

Max Fried, who pitched five strong innings for the win Sunday against the Cubs at Wrigley Field in his first major league start and fifth appearance, will make his second start Saturday against the Marlins at SunTrust Park.

“Right now the plan is for Fried to start on Saturday, and that puts Lucas in the bullpen for a while and pitch him out of there,” Snitker said. “Putting Lucas in the bullpen, I think that’ll be good for him to experience that, too, just like Max Fried did when he first came up. 

“Because going forward next year, we don’t know where these guys might fit. We look at them all as starters, but it’s a situation where if we can better our team by having one of the young guys in the bullpen pitching out of there and getting experience, then that’s the way we’re going to go.”

Gohara, 21, is the youngest of the four Braves to make their first major league starts this season including three left-handers. He began the season in high-Class A after coming to the Braves from the Mariners along with lefty relief prospect Thomas Burrows in a January trade for outfielder Mallex Smith and reliever Shae Simmons. 

Sims, 23, made his major league debut Aug. 1 and is 2-5 with a 5.97 ERA in seven starts. Fried, also 23, debuted Aug. 8 and pitched four times in relief before his first start.

The other rookie in the rotation, Sean Newcomb, made his debut June 10 -- two days before his 24th birthday -- and is 2-8 with a 4.31 ERA in 15 starts.

“There’s nothing set in stone,” Snitker said. “We have the latitude and the freedom to adjust as we go. It’s actually not a bad situation to be in that we have some starting options to finish out the year and can see some young guys. Lucas has had seven or eight starts since he came up, and let these guys get a few starts also.”

For now the Braves will go with a rotation of Julio Teheran, Mike Foltynewicz, 42-year-old knuckleballer R.A. Dickey and rookie lefties Newcomb, Fried and Gohara.

Gohara’s second start on Sept. 12 will come after a Braves’ day off on Monday.

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