EM Athlete Brandon Cunniff has followed up his unlikely bid to make the Braves’ by setting a club rookie record.
Cunniff hasn’t allowed a hit in four relief appearances (four innings) this season. That sets the Atlanta record for most outings to start a career without allowing a hit after Juan Jaime (2014), Roman Colon (2004) and John Rocker (1998) didn’t allow one in their first three appearances.
“I saw that last night on Twitter,” Cunniff said Sunday. “Somebody sent it to me. It’s pretty cool.”
It’s not as if Cunniff has done it solely with low-stakes appearances. The Braves had a 7-2 lead when Cunniff pitched a scoreless sixth inning in his big-league debut Tuesday at the Marlins but he’s had to help the Braves in tight games since then.
Cunniff preserved a scoreless tie by retiring the Marlins in order on Wednesday. He retired both Mets hitters he faced on Friday to keep the score tied 3-3. Cunniff limited the damage Saturday against the Mets when he came on with the bases loaded and no outs and got Wilber Flores to hit into a run-scoring double play.
Not bad for a player who pitched two seasons in an independent league after the Marlins released him after just 18 minor-league appearances. Cunniff said he’s moved past his initial nerves about being thrust into an important role as a rookie.
“I’m definitely getting comfortable,” he said. “It’s nice to know they have confidence in me. That helps.”
From a Blog written by Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal
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