Redmond Regains Place On Braves' 40-Man
ATLANTA—Todd Redmond has accomplished a feat that few players achieve. More than a year after being removed from the Braves' 40-man roster and re-signing with Atlanta on a minor league deal, the 26-year-old righthander impressed the brass enough in 2011 to get back on the roster.
"I knew at the end of the season that the Braves would have to put me on the 40-man or I'd become a free agent," Redmond said. "The situation was a little bit up in the air, and the ball was in their court. My agent had talks with several people and I knew that I would have several options if the Braves decided to go in another direction. The Braves called me the day before I would have become a free agent and told me I was going back on the roster."
The 2011 campaign represented Redmond's third straight as a member of the Gwinnett rotation. Having posted a combined 18-16 record in his first two years with the G-Braves, the 6-foot-3, 215-pound Redmond returned last spring in the best physical condition of his career and responded by going 10-8, 2.92. He also led the International League with 170 innings, ranked third in ERA, and placed fifth with 142 strikeouts.
"The key for me was being able to repeat my delivery, which is a result of the offseason workout program I did last year," Redmond said. "I dropped some weight and my conditioning definitely was better than it had been in recent seasons. Because of the consistency with my delivery, I was able to keep the ball down in the strike zone and force batters to hit my pitch. I felt better, and my fastball was back to the velocity I had earlier in my career."
The Braves acquired Redmond in March 2008 from the Pirates for righthander Tyler Yates. Redmond was originally a 39th-round pick by the Pirates in 2004. He has started 110 of his 115 appearances with the Braves but has yet to make an appearance with the big league club.
• While there has been a lot of talk, Braves general manager Frank Wren had not yet made a major move involving the major league roster. While he has had discussions regarding several players, including outfielder Martin Prado and righthander Jair Jurrjens, interest continues to run high on Atlanta's top pitching prospects—players Wren is not willing to deal.
• Luis Avilan could be a darkhorse candidate for a job in the Atlanta bullpen. The lefthander has pitched well this winter in the Venezuelan League, going 4-2, 2.61 in 18 outings.