Fried’s placement is backdated to August 8, two days after the southpaw took an awkward fall while attempting a fielding play in Atlanta’s 6-2 loss to the Mets. Fried was holding his head in the aftermath of the play but remained in the game and tossed three more innings.
After a few days of further evaluation, it appears as though the Braves have decided that Fried needs some more time to recover. He’ll miss his next start but hopefully no more, though it is hard to predict when concussion symptoms could fully dissipate.
Fried is in the midst of another excellent season, with a 2.60 ERA/3.36 SIERA over 22 starts and 138 1/3 innings. Despite a middling strikeout rate, Fried has been excellent at inducing grounders (50.5% groundball rate) and soft contact, and his 4.5% walk rate is among the best in the game. The 28-year-old has emerged as a front-of-the-rotation ace, and his health is key to Atlanta’s chance of repeating as World Series champions.
Since today is an off-day for the Braves, the team has a bit of flexibility in aligning its rotation in Fried’s absence. The left-hander was scheduled to start against the Marlins on Friday, but Atlanta could simply bump the other starters up one day and hope that Fried is able to return before his next turn in the rotation. The recently-optioned Ian Anderson is likely the first choice for a spot start should Fried have to miss more time.