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Paul Maholm leaves start due to sprained left wrist

By Matt Snyder | Baseball Writer

Paul Maholm discusses his injury with manager Fredi Gonzalez and an athletic trainer.
Paul Maholm discusses his injury with manager Fredi Gonzalez and an athletic trainer. (USATSI)

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Braves left-handed starting pitcher Paul Maholm was forced to leave his start against the White Sox on Saturday after just three innings of work due to a sprained left wrist, the club announced.

The impact on Saturday's game wasn't high, since Maholm wasn't going to last much longer anyway. He gave up seven runs on seven hits and had walked two without striking anyone out. But if he's DL-bound, the Braves will have a hole to fill in the rotation.

There appear to be two options, again, should Maholm be forced to miss any time.

Brandon Beachy had a 2.00 ERA through 13 starts last season before the Braves lost him to Tommy John surgery. He's nearing a return, as he worked five innings for Triple-A Gwinnett Friday night, allowing one run on five hits. He threw 70 pitches, so he's close to ready for a return.

The only other option is Alex Wood. The 22-year-old appeared in 16 games for the Braves this season, sporting a 2.45 ERA and 1.09 WHIP. He's been sent down to the minors in order to stretch out as a starting pitcher once again, and his only start since the plan began came Thursday night when he threw five innings and 83 pitches. So he's probably ready for a big-league start as well.

Maholm, 31, has a 4.41 ERA and 1.39 WHIP this season in 118 1/3 innings of work.

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