Could Mike Soroka start Opening Day for Braves?

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Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Soroka is continuing to progress in his injury rehab. The 23-year-old ruptured his Achilles in August, ending his 2020 season.

Soroka threw 2 innings of simulated baseball on Sunday morning at the teams training camp facility in Florida.

A lot has been made of Soroka's return to the mound; when is the right time? Soroka himself said he wants to be ready for Opening Day.

"I would not start Mike Soroka on Opening Day just because of all of the extra that's involved with being that guy who's getting that spot," 92.9 The Game Braves' reporter Joe Patrick told the Midday Show.

"I wouldn't want him (to be) distracted in any sort of way. I would really want him to be--have as low-key of a first start as possible. Even if he was healthy, hypothetically, and ready to go, I would probably go with Max Fried or maybe even a Charlie Morton for that matter."

So how long should the Braves wait to put Soroka back on the mound? Could his return be determined by how well the rotation is doing in the first month?

"A lot of people are saying 'just wait a month, don't rush him' ... in terms of aggravating an injury, he's not totally out of the woods until like September. But he will be usable and not at major risk of doing damage in the meantime so it's like if you put him off, if you stall his delay, you're not really gaining a lot, and what you're losing is obviously a lot of quality starts ... So, I think that's really going to be the balancing act that the Braves and Soroka have to try and manage during this time."