Mar 25, 2014; Lakeland, FL, USA; Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Ervin Santana (30) walks back to the dugout at the end of the second inning against the Detroit Tigers at Joker Marchant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Rumors: Atlanta Braves hope to have Ervin Santana ready for mid-April start

With a shortage of pitchers, and seemingly more going down on a daily basis, the Atlanta Braves are of course anxious to get newly acquired starter Ervin Santana on the hill. But according to Braves GM Frank Wren, he won’t rush getting Santana in the mix.

Santana, who the Braves picked up as a free-agent after starters Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy went down for the season with elbow injuries, will begin the year at Triple-A Gwinnett and will get himself stretched out and into pitching shape.

The Braves can’t afford not to be careful with Santana, because if he goes down, the domino effect would be devastating to the Braves pitching staff. reports that Wren wants to have Santana, Mike Minor and Gavin Floyd, all back in the Braves rotation sometime in mid-to-late April.

For now, David Hale has been tapped as the team’s fourth starter, and he’ll have to carry that through at least two to three turns in the rotation.

The current Braves starting rotation of Julio Teheran, Alex Wood, Aaron Harang and David Hale has a combined 366 major league starts – with 319 of those coming from Harang.

Tags: Atlanta Braves Ervin Santana Frank Wren MLB Spring Training