“It became clear to both the organization and Marcus that stepping away and getting a physical and mental break from this would be beneficial,” Atkins said. “I’m really impressed by his awareness to talk about the mental aspect of it.
“It will be a good opportunity for him to certainly get the physical rest and the mental rest and we don’t expect this to be a long period of time.”
Stroman has struggled in his seven starts so far this season, posting an 0-5 record with a 7.71 ERA. In his most recent start on Tuesday, he gave up five runs on nine hits in five innings in a loss to the Seattle Mariners.
Atkins said the move to give Stroman some rest was a mutual decision and came after the 27-year-old mentioned he was feeling fatigued.
“Once you are inefficient and experiencing that fatigue, it’s hard to continue to push through,” Atkins said. “So you’re just putting yourself at risk.”
Atkins’ comments match those made by Stroman after the loss to the Mariners.
“Something’s off,” he said post-game. “Just trying to find it. Definitely frustrating. I’m just struggling right now. I think I’ll get through it.”
Atkins wouldn’t commit to a time frame for Stroman’s return, only saying the team was going to take it one day at a time and that the main goal was to find what was best for Stroman.
Stroman was scheduled to pitch Sunday against the Boston Red Sox. Atkins said Joe Biagini, who was called up from triple-A Buffalo Friday, will take his place in the rotation for the time being but suggested other pitchers could get a chance to start too.