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Wright Takes the Next Step with 13-4 Record

Potential is a tough hill to climb.

For the last five years, Kyle Wright, the overhyped golden boy for the Atlanta Braves, has been trying to find himself.

More than a few seasons ago, Wright looked like a “can’t miss” prospect for the Braves. The pitching- rich Atlanta franchise is always on the lookout for the next Tom Glavine or the next John Smoltz.

The Braves thought the 6-foot-4 Wright just might be the next pitching superstar in Atlanta. After getting chosen fifth in the Major League Draft in 2017, Wright, the Vanderbilt All-American, received some handy spending money with a signing bonus of $7 million from the Braves.

Atlanta was hoping Wright might be big-league ready right out of college. But even for the multi-skilled Wright, that did come to pass.

Or to pitch. In his first four years in the Major Leagues, Wright never won more than two games in a season. He even began the 2019 campaign in the Braves starting rotation before bombing with an 0-3 record and a volatile earned run average of 8.69.

Wright was sent down to the minor leagues where he tried to find the strike zone, as well as his confidence.

It was not an overnight baseball thing either. In the following two seasons, in 2020 and 2021, Wright continued to wallow in the red clay and lose.

The right-hander was a combined 2-5 with an earned run average of well over 6.00 in that two-year cycle in the big leagues for Atlanta.

Was No.30 overrated to begin with?

Absolutely negative. Kyle Wright just needed some more professional baseball seasoning, from Rome, to Mississippi, to the Gwinnett Stripers in Class-AAA ball.

The hard times only made Wright a better pitcher. In the past year, Wright has finally found his consistency on the mound.

He has gone from a minor league question mark to a Major League starter with the defending World Series champion Atlanta Braves.

Kyle Wright is one of the hottest pitching commodities in the National League this season. Wright has not one, but five out pitches.

He is finding success and is getting some Major League outs with his change-up, his slider, his sinker, his curveball and his 95 MPH four-seam fastball.

Wright is having the kind of season that he always dreamed of. He is keeping the Braves in playoff contention with a 13-4 record and an earned run average of 2.93.

The 26-year-old Wright has started 20 games for Atlanta this year. He has racked up 120 strikeouts in 122.2 innings in the big leagues in the 2022 season.

Kyle Wright is finally on track in the majors with the big boys. The 6-foot-4, 215-pound Wright is pitching as well as anyone in the double-decker stadiums.

And the former SEC star out of Vandy is thankful for that. All of his bullpen sessions in the minor leagues and shutdown innings in the Major Leagues have done Wright a world of good.

He belongs in the Atlanta Braves starting rotation.

Wright Takes the Next Step with 13-4 Record
Chris Fernsler
Sports Editor

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