Sean Newcomb capped the Braves’ youthfully ideal Monday win with his first career save, notching a perfect inning against the Giants.
The lefty, considered quite an enigma even dating back to his days as an Angels prospect, has rediscovered himself in the bullpen. That isn’t to say Newcomb should or will be a reliever long-term, but the Braves won’t interrupt what’s working.
Newcomb hasn’t allowed a run in seven relief appearances spanning 8-1/3 innings. Manager Brian Snitker routinely praises his confidence and newfound apt for throwing strikes, his most glaring inconsistency as a starter.
“It’s smaller doses than I’m used to but it’s been good,” said Newcomb, who acknowledged he’s focused more on possible effects of his well-executed pitches rather than potential undesirable results from mistakes. “I’ve been able to keep my tempo up knowing I have a smaller chunk of time to work with.”
Newcomb is an intriguing ninth-inning option. He threw 13 of 20 pitches for strikes, with his velocity sitting around 94-95 mph.
“It was great,” Snitker said. “I wanted to stay away from Luke (Jackson) if we could, he’d had three out of four, and Newk had a day off. Hopefully we get an opportunity to try a few guys (in the ninth). That means you’re going good. It’s always interesting to see how they’re going to respond to it and that was great.”