The Atlanta Braves signed Georgia Tech left-hander Lee Hyde, their fourth round pick two weeks ago, to a contract. Since Hyde and the Yellow Jackets just got knocked out of the College World Series Sunday, the Braves will give him a few more days off before he reports to Danville next week.
The six-foot-two, 205 pound Hyde pitched a fantastic game last Friday against Clemson. He allowed only two runs on three hits in seven innings of work, with five walks, and six strikeouts. The two runs scored after Hyde allowed a walk and single before he was relieved by Brad Rulon, who gave up a double that scored Hyde's base runners. The Tigers broke out for eight runs in that eighth inning to beat Tech 8-4.
For the season, Hyde was 6-0 with a 3.02 ERA in 25 games (11 starts). He allowed 29 earned runs on 75 hits in 86.1 innings, with 42 walks, and 72 strikeouts.
In early June, Hyde made quite an impression on several Braves' scouts, as they watched him out pitch Vanderbilt's David Price, one of the top pitchers in the country. Hyde gave up three runs (two earned) on four hits in 6.1 innings, with only one walk, and five strikeouts.
Hyde played high school baseball at Fayette County in Fayetteville, just 25 miles south of Atlanta. In his freshman year at Tech, Hyde was 5-2 with a 5.73 ERA in 16 games (nine starts). He had 47 strikeouts and 20 walks in 48.2 innings. Then in his sophomore season, Hyde started all 18 games he pitched in and was 7-4 with a 4.68 ERA. He allowed 101 hits in 92.1 innings, with 41 walks, and 72 strikeouts.
The Braves see Hyde's long-term spot as a reliever, a role he performed well in this past season. But for now he'll rack up innings as a starter. It's possible he could be moved up to Rome in mid-July if all goes well in Danville.
Hyde is the fourteenth Braves' draft pick signed to a contract. Oregon State's Kevin Gunderson, the Braves' fifth round pick, is still playing in the College World Series.
Bill Shanks is the author of Scout's Honor: The Bravest Way To Build A Winning Team, a look inside the Braves‘ traditional scouting and player development philosophies. He can also be heard regularly on the Braves Radio Network. Email Bill at email@example.com.
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