Braves right-hander Spencer Strider, who has not pitched since Sept. 18 because of an oblique injury, is a part of Atlanta's postseason roster. Manager Brian Snitker announced that news on Tuesday morning, ahead of Game 1 of the National League Division Series versus the Philadelphia Phillies.
Snitker added that Strider will throw a bullpen session ahead of the contest, meaning that he will not be available to pitch in Game 1. He could be a candidate to start Game 3 of the series, however, depending on how the Braves weigh his merits versus those of veteran right-hander Charlie Morton.
Strider, 23, emerged as one of the top young starters in the game this season. In 31 appearances (20 of them starts) he posted a 2.67 ERA (153 ERA+) and a 4.49 strikeout-to-walk ratio. The Braves moved him into their rotation on a full-time basis in late May and he responded by amassing a 2.77 ERA and 165 strikeouts in 107 innings of work. He held opponents to a .526 OPS across those 20 outings.
The Braves expressed their confidence in Strider's ability to sustain such results on Monday, announcing a long-term extension that doubled as the richest ever given to a rookie pitcher. Strider will earn $75 million over the next six seasons with a chance to increase the total value to $92 million over seven years if the Braves exercise an option. Strider joined Matt Olson, Michael Harris II, and Austin Riley as young Braves players locked up this calendar year.
The Braves will begin their series against the Phillies on Tuesday afternoon. The winner of the best-of-five series will move on to play for the NL pennant against either the Los Angeles Dodgers or the San Diego Padres.