Teheran leaves game with trapezius tightness

Braves pitcher Julio Teheran was pulled from his Friday night start at Philadelphia with upper right upper trapezius tightness, after pitching just three innings and failing to crack 88 mph with his fastball.

The trapezius, or “trap,” is one of the major muscles of the back and helps stabilize and rotate the shoulder blade.

“I feel it every time I sleep (wrong on it), that’s when I feel it,” Teheran said. “I don’t remember last night having a problem sleeping, just when I was warming up, that’s when I started to feel it, that I was (favoring) that part of … my arm during the windup.

“I thought that it was going to go away when I got warm and got in the game. But it stayed the same. Obviously the miles (per hour) that I was throwing wasn’t good – 85 miles per hour, 87 – but I was just out there trying to do my job and compete.”

The Braves staked him to a 3-0 lead in the first inning on a walk, three hits – Ozzie Albies double, Freddie Freeman RBI single, Ronald Acuna scorched RBI double – and a double-steal that scored Albies. But Teheran gave back the entire lead before recording his first out.

He walked the first two Phillies batters before hanging a first-pitch change-up that Odubel Herrera drove over the right-field wall for a line-drive three-run homer.

TV cameras showed Teheran speaking with manager Brian Snitker in the dugout after the third inning, Snitker doing most of the talking and telling him why he was pulling him.

“He probably thought he could work through it,” Snitker said. “I don’t know if he slept wrong or something like that. He’s day-to-day and he should be good for his next start. But it was just something that wasn’t loosening up and I didn’t like the way it looked, and I didn’t want to take a chance of gigging something and missing a significant amount of time.”

Rookie left-hander Max Fried replaced Teheran to start the fourth inning with the score 3-3.

“It’s hard (to pitch through soreness). I was trying to do it, but it’s hard,” Teheran said. “Good thing he decided to take me out so it didn’t get any worse....

“I thought I could make it at least for the fifth inning, but like I said, he was the one who decided to take me out. I respect that. He knew I wasn’t 100 percent and he preferred to take me out today and don’t risk the season because it (could get) worse.”

Teheran’s fastball normally sits in the 90-91 mph range and tops out at about 92 mph, but against the Phillies he threw some fastballs at 84-85 mph – barely any difference from the velocity of his change-ups and breaking balls.

“The first inning, the velocity was way down,” Snitker said. “We came back up here (to the clubhouse) to look and make sure the gun readings out there (stadium radar gun) weren’t right. And the second inning he said it started loosening up a little bit, (but) the third inning you could tell it wasn’t getting any better.

“So just stop, get treatment on it and don’t take a chance.”

Teheran gave up two walks and two hits to the first four batters he faced, then retired the next eight, albeit without ever increasing his velocity.

When told that Snitker thought he would be able to make his next start, Teheran said, “Yeah, it’s nothing for me to worry about. I’m a smart guy and I know when it’s something bad and I need to worry, and I know when it’s something that I can make it through.

“Probably better to (come out) and go back out there when I can be 100 percent.”