Braves' Minter K's 7 in 3 innings in starting debut

11:04 PM ET

Jeff PassanESPN


ESPN MLB insider
Author of “The Arm: Inside the Billion-Dollar Mystery of the Most Valuable Commodity in Sports”

ARLINGTON, Texas — Atlanta Braves left-hander A.J. Minter made history with his first career start on Friday in Game 5 of the National League Championship Series. Then he made it again with his performance.

After becoming the first Major League Baseball pitcher to make his starting debut in a postseason game, Minter struck out seven Los Angeles Dodgers over three innings, the most ever in a playoff outing of three or fewer innings, starter or reliever.

Minter, who was not announced as the Braves’ starter until Friday morning, was a lockdown reliever for the Braves this season but had not lasted more than 1⅔ innings or 36 pitches in an outing. He left Game 5 having allowed one hit, no walks and no runs over 42 pitches.

The Dodgers won 7-3 to force Game 6 .

“To be honest with you, yeah, I did surprise myself a little bit,” Minter said. “Coming in the game, I wanted to set the tone. I wanted to attack one inning at a time and not

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