The 20-year-old Soroka, Atlanta’s first-round selection in 2015, is ranked as the Braves’ No. 3 prospect and the No. 30 prospect in all of baseball by MLB.com. The Calgary, Alberta native posted a 1.99 ERA and a 0.97 WHIP over four starts (22.2 innings) this season at Gwinnett. Over his minor-league career, he’s been extremely effective, throwing for a 2.85 ERA and 1.10 WHIP in 353.1 innings. Soroka will become the youngest pitcher in the major leagues, though he’ll amazingly only be the second-youngest player on his own team. He’s roughly four months older than outfielder Ronald Acuna, Jr., who debuted just over a week ago.
It appears very possible that Soroka’s first major-league stint will be a short one. The Braves sent down incumbent fifth starter Matt Wisler, who had posted a very respectable 3.75 ERA and 1.17 WHIP over two starts, on April 27 with the intention of skipping his next start and allowing their other four starters to pitch on regular rest. But with veteran Julio Teheran experiencing some trapezius soreness, the Braves wanting to be cautious with second-year left-hander Sean Newcomb, and Wisler having to remain in Triple-A for the requisite 10 days, they ultimately decided to pull the trigger on Soroka. Veteran righty Anibal Sanchez also pitched very well out of the fifth starter slot before suffering a hamstring strain during batting practice on April 18, but he could pitch out of the bullpen if the Braves prefer to move forward with Soroka or Wisler once Sanchez returns.