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Braves option RP A.J. Minter to minors

Apr 27, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves relief pitcher A.J. Minter (33) reacts as he leaves the mound during a pitching change in the ninth inning against the Colorado Rockies at SunTrust Park. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Once expected to lead the team in saves this season, Atlanta Braves relief pitcher A.J. Minter will now find himself competing for innings in the minor leagues.

On Friday, the Braves activated left-handed reliever Jonny Venters off the 10-day injured list and sent Minter packing to Triple-A Gwinnett.

The 25-year-old southpaw’s struggles in Atlanta proved costly for the Braves as his command issues and home run totals greatly inflated his ERA.

In 11 innings, Minter surrendered nine walks, two home runs and 12 earned runs for a gruesome 9.82 ERA and 2.36 WHIP.

Atlanta now hopes some time in the minors will help him refine his command and return to the more dominant form fans enjoyed in 2018. In his first full season in the majors last year, Minter recorded a 3.23 ERA with an 18.1 percent K-BB rate across 61.1 innings compared to his 11.9 percent rate this season.