Originally posted on Fox Sports South  |  Last updated 9/15/12
ATLANTA The confidence never left Kris Medlen. Not when he had Tommy John surgery. Not when he missed nearly an entire season while rehabbing his right elbow. And not when he started this season in the Braves' bullpen. That's just how he thinks, how he attacks life. It's not cockiness or arrogance. He just thinks he can beat you. Medlen is the guy with the straight bill and the moving pitches who looks like the dudes you might see playing Hacky Sack at the skateboard park. His outlook is California Cool, but his arm is Southern Sizzling. Medlen wasn't the winning pitcher against the Nationals at Turner Field on Friday night, but he was practically unhittable once again. He struck out a career high 13 batters in seven innings and left with the game tied before the Braves won 2-1 in the ninth. But that's what they always do when Medlen pitches, or at least the last 20 times he's started. They've won 20 consecutive of his starts, a streak that dates to 2010, the first time that's been done since the Yankees won 20 straight of Roger Clemens' starts in 2001. "That's the goal. It's something you strive for as a team, to go out and win games," Medlen said. "If they're winning when I'm on the mound, keep running me out there. That's something I've taken pride in all of my life is winning games and winning no matter what. "It's just worked out that way. I don't know what it is about me on the mound. One of my last starts in 2010, I gave up five in six innings and we still won the game. It's not like I'm throwing zeros up there all the time." Um, yes it is. Even though he didn't get the win, Medlen has been missing bats every since he joined the Braves' rotation on July 31. It's easy to see why he was the NL pitcher of the month for August. Medlen is 7-0 (4-0 with a 0.50 ERA last month) in his nine starts and has allowed only seven runs in 62.2 innings. Even though he spells his first name with a K, he doesn't call himself a strikeout pitcher. Try to tell that to the 46 batters he's fooled in his past 37 innings (a ratio of 11.19 per nine innings). "Certain things are working certain days. It really just comes down to execution," Medlen said. "It sounds robotic, but it's executing your pitches. If you set guys up, you can kind of do what you want. When you have two strikes, you want to put them away." His 13 strikeouts Friday night surpassed his career high of 12, set on just 11 days ago, earned a Twitter shout out from Chipper Jones "13 punchies by Med? Unbelievable!" and left Medlen feeling a little giddy. After watching fire-balling closer Craig Kimbrel strike out the side in the ninth, Medlen said: "He saw how many strikeouts I had and he was getting a little jealous. I just hope I finish the season with more strikeouts than him." For the record, Medlen has 102 in 117 innings to Kimbrel's 101 in 54 13 innings. Medlen's success is even more remarkable considering he spent most of 2011 coming back from having his elbow rebuilt. He had a setback last summer, prompting the Braves to shut him down for six weeks, but he reached the majors in time to pitch a couple of innings last September. His confidence remained strong through that time, bolstered by teammates who had gone through the same thing. He just yearned for another chance. "I sit there sometimes and kind of wonder, How am I supposed to keep this up?' " Medlen said. "I just stop thinking like that and I simplify and I just take it that one pitch at one time. I go out there and battle for that at-bat at that time and I think I can get you out. That's kind of the thing that's taken off for me this year. It's kind of snowballed."
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Cavs operating as if Irving trade is ‘inevitable’

Jason Garrett continues to staunchly back Ezekiel Elliott

Report: Thunder interested in trading for Carmelo Anthony

Report: Price told Eckersley ‘get the f— out of here’ on team flight

Jerry Jones: ‘I had a wonderful time before this social media hit’

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Pirates ‘leaning against’ Andrew McCutchen trade

Devin McCourty: Talk of Patriots going 19-0 is ‘ridiculous’

Mayweather says he will stand ‘toe to toe’ with McGregor

Report: Derrick Rose ‘leaning toward’ signing with Cavs

Report: Irving believes LeBron leaked word of trade request

Spieth tells caddie to 'get that' after incredible eagle putt

The 'When George Brett went completely batty' quiz

Finding the possible Achilles' heel for baseball’s best teams

Getaway Day: A pair of aces get lost in the shuffle

Sports & Politics Intersect: Trump casts shadow over U.S. Women's Open

Best of Yardbarker: General managers take the spotlight

The 'Pay that man his money' quiz

The unexpected rise of the Connecticut Sun

The National League Wild Card is suddenly relevant again

Kicking It: USMNT struggles to find consistency in Gold Cup as World Cup qualifying nears

Three Up, Three Down: The Dodgers are a complete juggernaut right now

BIG3 Week 5: Pivotal make-or-break weekend in Chicago

Who won the Open Championship in the year you were born?

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'When George Brett went completely batty' quiz

Finding the possible Achilles' heel for baseball’s best teams

Getaway Day: A pair of aces get lost in the shuffle

Sports & Politics Intersect: Trump casts shadow over U.S. Women's Open

The National League Wild Card is suddenly relevant again

The 'Pay that man his money' quiz

BIG3 Week 5: Pivotal make-or-break weekend in Chicago

The 'Let's show a little love for James Jones' quiz

Making an NFL GM change in the summer has its benefits

The 'Yoan Moncada era starts now' quiz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker