Jul 072010
July 7 MLB.com

Braves right-hander Kris Medlen is a little more than half the age of Phillies lefty Jamie Moyer, but the two have quite a bit in common.

When the two pitchers face each other on Wednesday night in the finale of a key National League East series at Citizens Bank Park, you’ll see a young athlete with an understanding of the art of pitching going up against the Major Leagues’ reigning master of that very discipline.

At 24, Medlen has been nothing short of a revelation for the Braves this year, and he is working on the transition from spot starter to star. He has a 5-1 record and he’s only given up two runs in his past 13 innings, striking out 10 batters along the way.

Detroit manager Jim Leyland, who has seen a lot in a long career, witnessed Medlen’s moxie a few starts ago and was as effusive with praise as he has been about any opponent all year.

“The kid, he was an artist, and it must be working,” Leyland said. “He’s won about five in a row. There’s room for a lot of different types of people in this game. You don’t just have to throw it 96 mph. I thought he was very impressive.”

Meanwhile, at 47, Moyer simply continues to amaze.

Aside from his June 11 start against Boston, in which he surrendered nine runs in the first inning in the worst outing of his career, he has a 3.38 ERA the rest of the way.

Moyer has 267 career wins and has logged more than 4,000 innings, but he doesn’t want to think about any milestones while the season is still going and there are games to be won.

“I feel like, if I start to fall into that, I’m going to start following it, and all of a sudden, lose focus on what I really need to do,” Moyer said. “For me, there’s a time and a place for all of that, and it’s not midseason. I know I will start to become distracted if I do follow that.”

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