2009 NEWS

2009 NEWS > 6/2/09


By Adam Rosenberg
Original Article HERE.

ROME, Ga. -- Facing a lineup made up entirely of players born after he made his professional debut, Braves left-hander Tom Glavine completed another impressive rehab assignment as he attempts to come back from shoulder and elbow surgery.

Glavine pitched six scoreless innings for Class A Rome on Tuesday against the Augusta GreenJackets, striking out two in a 3-0 Braves victory. Glavine retired the final 12 batters he faced after giving up all three of his hits in the first two innings. Of the 64 pitches Glavine threw, 44 were strikes.

"I felt good," Glavine said. "I felt like early in the game, I was struggling with my mechanics and my tempo a little bit. As the game went on, everything got a little bit better."

The 43-year-old is coming back from an August surgery that repaired the flexor tendon in his left elbow and cleared debris out of the same shoulder. After the game, Glavine said his arm felt good and he was pain free.

After completing his third Minor League start of the year, Glavine said he feels ready to pitch for Atlanta. His next scheduled start would be Sunday, and he expects to have a conversation with general manager Frank Wren and manager Bobby Cox about whether or not that start will be for the big league club.

"I don't know what else I can do," Glavine said. "It's not like I want to go out and have another rehab start and throw 100 pitches. I feel physically good. I feel good about the amount of pitches I've thrown. I feel like I'm ready, so we'll see what the powers-that-be want."

Glavine ran into early trouble in the second inning, allowing a single to James Simmons on a 1-2 count. With two runners on, Vladimir Frias singled to right, but Simmons was thrown out at home by right fielder Luis Sumoza.

After the rocky second inning, Glavine found a groove, needing only 25 pitches to complete his last three innings.

"Today was a tale of two games," Glavine said. "Early on I was fighting my tempo and fighting my location. After the third inning, I was able to make good pitches more consistently."

Because State Mutual Field doesn't have a radar gun display, Glavine's velocity was unknown. However, he said he felt like his velocity was the same as it was during Thursday's start for Triple-A Gwinnett. During that outing, Glavine's fastball was clocked between 83 and 86 mph.

One thing that bothered Glavine about his Thursday start was the way he pitched his last couple of innings. Glavine said he began to "muscle up," or attempt to throw harder while sacrificing mechanics. During Tuesday's start, he said that wasn't an issue at all.

"I didn't go out and do that today," Glavine said. "I just focused more on having a good tempo and making good pitches. I wasn't trying to find out how much I had left in arm strength."