|ATLANTA ( MINOR )|
KANSAS CITY ( MENDOZA )
|929||ATLANTA||-140||Ov 8,-120||-125||Ov 8.5,-115|
|930||KANSAS CITY||+130||Un 8,+100||+115||Un 8.5,-105|
|vs Right-handed Starters||31-24||+0.9||27-24||4.1||0.242||0.313||3.4||0.248||0.298|
|Past 7 Games||3-5||-4.6||2-4||2.9||0.238||0.322||3.5||0.265||0.324|
|vs Left-handed Starters||6-14||-9.1||7-13||3.1||0.223||0.279||4.1||0.260||0.320|
|Past 7 Games||2-5||-3.7||3-4||3.0||0.239||0.296||4.7||0.255||0.337|
|6/12/2013||MAHOLM(L)||@ SAN DIEGO||VOLQUEZ(R)||3-5||L||-125||8 un||P||10||9||1||7||6||1|
|6/14/2013||MEDLEN(R)||SAN FRANCISCO||BUMGARNER(L)||0-6||L||-135||7 un||U||3||3||0||11||7||1|
|6/15/2013||MINOR(L)||SAN FRANCISCO||GAUDIN(R)||6-5||W||-185||7 ov||O||11||9||2||11||8||1|
|6/16/2013||TEHERAN(R)||SAN FRANCISCO||LINCECUM(R)||3-0||W||-165||7.5 ev||U||7||8||0||7||8||1|
|6/17/2013||HUDSON(R)||NY METS||GEE(R)||2-1||W||-185||7.5 ov||U||5||4||0||7||8||0|
|6/18/2013||WOOD(L)||NY METS||HARVEY(R)||3-4||L||-110||7 un||P||6||6||1||7||8||0|
|6/18/2013||MAHOLM(L)||NY METS||WHEELER(R)||1-6||L||-185||7 ov||P||7||12||2||14||10||1|
|6/19/2013||MEDLEN(R)||NY METS||MARCUM(R)||5-3||W||-185||7.5 un||O||7||8||1||6||2||0|
|6/20/2013||MINOR(L)||NY METS||NIESE(L)||3-4||L||-185||7.5 un||U||13||11||3||9||6||1|
|6/21/2013||TEHERAN(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||PERALTA(R)||0-2||L||-135||8.5 un||U||2||7||0||8||7||0|
|6/22/2013||HUDSON(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||HAND(R)||0-2||L||-140||8.5 un||U||4||4||0||9||11||0|
|6/23/2013||MAHOLM(L)||@ MILWAUKEE||FIGARO(R)||7-4||W||-130||9 un||O||14||11||0||9||8||0|
|6/25/2013||MEDLEN(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||SANTANA(R)||4-3||W||100||8 ov||U||10||8||2||8||8||0|
|6/26/2013||MINOR(L)||@ KANSAS CITY||MENDOZA(R)|| |
|7/3/2013|| ||MIAMI|| || |
|6/13/2013||SANTANA(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||HELLICKSON(R)||10-1||W||130||7.5 un||O||14||5||1||6||6||0|
|6/14/2013||MENDOZA(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||MOORE(L)||7-2||W||155||8 un||O||10||7||0||7||7||0|
|6/15/2013||GUTHRIE(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||COBB(R)||3-5||L||160||7.5 un||O||8||9||1||8||6||0|
|6/16/2013||DAVIS(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||HERNANDEZ(R)||5-3||W||135||8 un||P||11||10||0||7||8||1|
|6/17/2013||SHIELDS(R)||@ CLEVELAND||CARRASCO(R)||2-1||W||-130||8 un||U||7||8||1||6||11||0|
|6/18/2013||SANTANA(R)||@ CLEVELAND||JIMENEZ(R)||3-4||L||-105||7.5 un||U||7||8||0||6||5||1|
|6/19/2013||MENDOZA(R)||@ CLEVELAND||MASTERSON(R)||3-6||L||140||8 un||O||12||9||1||7||6||0|
|6/21/2013||GUTHRIE(R)||CHI WHITE SOX||SANTIAGO(L)||1-9||L||-135||8.5 ov||O||3||2||1||11||7||0|
|6/22/2013||DAVIS(R)||CHI WHITE SOX||QUINTANA(L)||2-3||L||-120||8.5 un||U||7||6||0||9||8||0|
|6/23/2013||SHIELDS(R)||CHI WHITE SOX||AXELROD(R)||7-6||W||-190||8 ev||O||12||8||0||11||10||2|
|6/27/2013||GUTHRIE(R)||@ MINNESOTA||DEDUNO(R)|| |
|6/28/2013||DAVIS(R)||@ MINNESOTA||WALTERS(R)|| |
|6/29/2013||SHIELDS(R)||@ MINNESOTA||GIBSON(R)|| |
|6/30/2013||SANTANA(R)||@ MINNESOTA||CORREIA(R)|| |
|7/3/2013|| ||CLEVELAND|| || |
|ATLANTA: HITTING: The Braves were 27th in the majors in steals last year, but that number should rise with a full season of speedster OF MICHAEL BOURN, who was acquired from Houston last July. OFs MARTIN PRADO and JASON HEYWARD comprise the corner outfield spots, and are both are looking to bounce back after disappointing, injury-riddled 2011 campaigns. 2B DAN UGGLA smacked a career-best 36 HR in his first year with Atlanta, his fifth straight 30-homer season. Steady veterans C BRIAN McCANN and 3B CHIPPER JONES comprise a solid middle of the lineup. McCann has four straight 20-HR, 70-RBI seasons, while Jones, who turns 40 in April, has a career .402 on-base percentage. 1B FREDDIE FREEMAN was the N.L.'s best offensive rookie last year, batting .282 with 21 HR and 76 RBI. The starting shortstop will be one of two highly-touted, 22-year-old prospects, TYLER PASTORNICKY or ANDRELTON SIMMONS. |
STARTING PITCHING: Even with significant injuries to three starters, the Braves rotation still ranked ninth in the majors in ERA (3.73), thanks to TIM HUDSON posting a 3.22 ERA in 215 innings. The right-hander was lights-out at Turner Field again, going 10-4 with a 2.31 ERA and 1.01 WHIP. But he'll be out at least a month because of back problems. JAIR JURRJENS was outstanding through the end of July (12-3, 2.38 ERA), but a knee strain bothered him in August and shut him down for September. Although many teams inquired about Jurrjens in the offseason, it doesn't look like the Braves want to deal him just yet. TOMMY HANSON is another young star (25) that had to be shut down in early August due to a partially torn rotator cuff. His ERA was a career-worst 3.60, but he notched a career-best 9.8 K/9 rate. BRANDON BEACHY, also 25, posted a whopping 10.7 K/9 ratio with a respectable ERA (3.68) and WHIP (1.21). Atlanta is loaded with young pitchers, but expect MIKE MINOR (5-3, 4.14 ERA) and RANDALL DELGADO to start in the majors, with JULIO TEHERAN, who has the most upside of the trio, to begin 2012 in Triple-A.
RELIEF PITCHING: CRAIG KIMBREL exceeded all expectations last year, establishing himself as one of the best closers in the game. He struck out an eye-popping 14.8 batters per nine (127 K in 77 IP), and converted 46-of-54 (85%) save chances. Even though Kimbrel's job as a closer is probably locked down for the next decade, the Braves have two other great relievers, both lefties. JONNY VENTERS posted a 1.84 WHIP and .176 opponents' BA in 88 innings, and is next in line for saves (five in 2011) should Kimbrel suffer an injury. Fellow southpaw ERIC O'FLAHERTY had a 0.98 ERA (8 ER in 73.2 IP) and 32 holds, just three fewer than Venters.
|KANSAS CITY: HITTING: With Melky Cabrera gone, OF LORENZO CAIN will get first crack at leadoff and centerfield. If he falters, speedster JASON BOURGEOIS, vet MITCH MAIER and prospect WIL MYERS are waiting. Former Brewer YUNIESKY BETANCOURT will start at 2B and has good life in his bat for a middle infielder. OF ALEX GORDON may not hit for average, but his approach and power are there. DH BILLY BUTLER is rock solid, but it's fair to wonder whether his power will ever progress. 1B ERIC HOSMER has MVP-type upside, and he's on the verge of figuring out MLB pitching. OF JEFF FRANCOEUR still chases too many bad pitches, but the organization likes him and he still has some pop and speed. 3B MIKE MOUSTAKAS is too good for the minors, but he still hasn't caught up to major-league pitching. There's a good chance he finds his groove this year. C HUMBERTO QUINTERO will be the main backstop with BRAYAN PENA backing him up. Speedy SS ALCIDES ESCOBAR's bat hasn't caught up to his glove. |
STARTING PITCHING: K.C. once again hopes this is the year LUKE HOCHEVAR puts it all together. His velocity picked up late last year, allowing him to be more than a groundball guy. Lefty BRUCE CHEN's late-career renaissance continues. He'll be a reliable veteran arm in the middle of K.C.'s rotation again. FELIPE PAULINO has the biggest upside in this rotation. He's always had one of MLB's best fastballs. His problem was that, when he missed (which has been often), it was usually belt-high and over the middle of the plate. If he hits his spots as he did late last year, he's got potential. But Paulino will start the season on the DL with a sore elbow. The Royals hope to solve JONATHAN SANCHEZ's command issues. The lefty is a risk, but has legitimate No. 3 potential. Top prospect DANNY DUFFY will get every chance to pitch his way into the Opening Day rotation.
RELIEF PITCHING: JOAKIM SORIA is out for the season with Tommy John surgery, leaving GREG HOLLAND to pick up closer duties. Holland was the Royals' best bullpen arm in 2011 and his stuff has always been nearly unhittable. It's just a matter of whether last year's vastly improved walk rate was for real. JONATHAN BROXTON was a disaster last season, but he'll be given every chance to become the No. 2 guy in this bullpen because of his experience in Los Angeles. AARON CROW was a first-round pick (twice) for his college career as a starter, but wore down late last year, and walked too many batters.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER NL PREVIEW (ATLANTA-KANSAS CITY) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Braves-Royals Preview* =======================
By JONAH ROSENBLUM STATS Writer
Atlanta (45-33) at Kansas City (35-39), 8:10 p.m. EDT
The Atlanta Braves have broken out over their past two games.
They'll look to turn their offensive momentum into a third straight win as they close a two-game set against the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday night.
The Braves (45-33) had batted .205 while losing five of six and were held to three runs or fewer in all of those losses. But they scored four times in the first inning at Milwaukee Sunday and posted a three-run fifth in their 4-3 victory over the Royals (35-39) on Tuesday. After they were held scoreless with six hits over two losses, they have 11 runs and 24 hits in two wins.
Freddie Freeman reached base twice Tuesday to snap out of a 2-for-24 (.083) skid though he still hasn't recorded an extra-base hit since his walk-off home run against the Mets on June 17. Jason Heyward, who was previously mired in a 6-for-33 (.182) slump, recorded two hits, including a home run, in Atlanta's opener against Kansas City.
"I was just looking for a pitch in the zone to hit," Heyward said.
All of this is welcome news for Atlanta's Mike Minor (8-3, 2.89 ERA), who has a 6.00 ERA over his last two starts after compiling a 2.44 ERA through his first 13. Minor's struggles carried into his last outing Thursday, when he gave up nine hits and four runs, including three homers, in a 4-3 loss to the Mets.
"The home runs were just bad pitches," Minor said. "Fastball over the middle, hanging curveball and a first-pitch hanging slider, so give credit to those guys. They were bad pitches. They took them out of the yard."
Minor will look to return to his old ways on the road, where he is seventh in the majors with a 2.38 ERA. A win Wednesday would move him into a first-place tie with St. Louis' Adam Wainwright with seven road wins.
The Royals accounted for one of Minor's three losses on the season, even though the left-hander held them to one run and five hits in six innings of the Braves' 1-0 loss April 17.
Kansas City has dropped five of six, scoring 12 runs in those defeats. Billy Butler hasn't helped matters, going 3 for 18 (.167) with no extra-base hits during the team's skid. Kansas City's slump comes in spite of the best efforts of Mike Moustakas, who has hit .474 over that stretch. The third baseman saw his streak of four straight multi-hit games snapped Tuesday but still managed a double and a walk.
Butler and Moustakas will look to give Luis Mendoza (2-4, 4.30) some much-needed support. The right-hander has received just 14 runs of support over his last seven starts, five of which the Royals have lost. He is winless at home this season with a 5.88 ERA.
Mendoza surrendered four runs, four hits and three walks in five innings of Kansas City's 6-3 loss at Cleveland Wednesday.
After losing 11 straight games at Kauffman Stadium earlier this season, the Royals have won eight of their last 12 at home.
|Last Updated: 10/1/2014 5:21:47 PM EST|