Millwood to start Game 2
Blister moves Maddux to pitch in Game 3Posted: Wednesday October 02, 2002 11:58 AM
ATLANTA (AP) -- Kevin Millwood will start Game 2 of the Atlanta Braves' NL division series instead of Greg Maddux, who has a blister on his pitching hand.
Maddux has been bumped to Game 3 of the best-of-five series against the Giants. He'll pitch Saturday after the series shifts to San Francisco.
Millwood and Maddux both made their last appearance of the regular season Friday in a doubleheader against the New York Mets, so rest is not an issue.
The decision by manager Bobby Cox is mainly a precautionary measure, in case the blister worsens.
"He wanted to go tomorrow, but we just decided it would be safer to wait," Cox said before Wednesday's series opener at Turner Field.
The Braves are using a three-man rotation for the first round of the playoffs. By pitching Thursday, Millwood would be able to start again in Game 5 if needed. If Maddux started the second game and the blister prevented him from coming back on three days' rest, Atlanta would have been forced to use fourth starter Damian Moss in a deciding game.
Trainer Dave Pursley said the blister began forming during Maddux's last start.
"It's not really a blister," Pursley said. "We're trying to prevent it from becoming a blister."
The Braves also set their 25-man roster for the opening round, electing to keep 10 pitchers and little-used Steve Torrealba as a third catcher.
Pitchers Jason Marquis, Albie Lopez and Tim Spooneybarger were dropped from the roster. Marquis and Lopez were not surprises, but Cox decided to keep Kevin Gryboski because Spooneybarger has the flu.
The Braves would go back to 11 pitchers if they reached the NL championship series.