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2008-braves-bullpen-joey-devine | October | 2007 Articles

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2008 Braves Bullpen: Joey Devine

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Joey Devine enjoyed an excellent season between Mississippi and Richmond this past season. There really is nothing you could point to as a weakness from his stats. In 57 combined innings, Devine had a 20 saves with a 1.89 ERA. The side-arming right-hander allowed only 41 hits and 19 walks while striking out 78. Sound pretty good because that's not all. One glaring problem was his inability to keep the ball on the ground last year. Devine raised his ground outs/fly outs from 0.64 last year to 1.51 this year, but allowed only two balls to leave the park while he was on the mound. The 2005 first-round pick held opposing batters to an average right around .200 and his 0.95 WHIP with Richmond ranked first in the International League. What can you say about Devine's time in the big leagues this year? He certainly did rack up the frequent flier miles I guess. Whenever an extra reliever was needed, it seemed Devine would be called up, used for one game, and sent back down. I do understand the caution behind using him. He was already sent in to one mental relapse because of struggles in the majors that cost him over a year. I certainly wouldn't have wanted to see another one. Devine went 1-0 with a 1.08 ERA in 8.1 innings with seven strikeouts, but he walked just under one per inning. Joey Devine has one huge thing going for him. He has run out of options so not putting him on the 25-man roster would result in the team losing him. The control issues are not something I expect to stay over the course of a season. It seems like more of an adjustment to pitching in the majors. Devine has dominant stuff. Through all of his struggles and successes, something has never changed. He has the stuff of a closer. I wouldn't be shocked at all if Devine could come in next season and be one of the better options out of the Braves pen. What is your opinion on Joey Devine?
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