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Minor primed to rejoin Braves' rotation

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Minor primed to rejoin Braves' rotation

ATLANTA -- Despite giving up four home runs on a windy Friday night in Pensacola, Fla., Braves left-hander Mike Minor was pleased with his final rehab start for Double-A Mississippi, which he described as "better than probably all of the other ones." He will throw a bullpen session in a couple of days before the Braves decide where to plug him into the starting rotation.

"I felt good," Minor said. "I didn't really care about the outcome."

Minor gave up five runs on 10 hits and struck out two in seven innings, throwing 81 pitches before he exited. He upped his total to 95 pitches in a bullpen session after he exited the game.

"I feel like I was good last week, but I feel better now, I guess," Minor said.

Even with Minor primed to rejoin the rotation, Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez is not in a rush to put Minor out on the mound. Given Monday's off-day, Gonzalez does not want to disrupt the other starters by giving them any more than six days of rest.

Gonzalez has no intention of making a decision in advance of who Minor will replace when he eventually returns. Gonzalez wants to wait rather than have the cloud of an assignment to Triple-A Gwinnett hanging over a pitcher's head.

"When that time comes, whoever that person is, you talk to them," Gonzalez said.

The wind was blowing out to left field on the night, and Minor felt that aided all but one of the long balls he surrendered. Minor described it as tough place to pitch, and Gonzalez said he heard "the wind was really, really howling."

"Three of them were popups, three out of four, one guy got me," Minor said of the home runs he gave up. "Everything was pull approach, so I felt like everything I threw in they were right on it. They were looking for it."

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Joe Morgan is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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