Braves-Diamondbacks Series Preview: Facing Upton
By Joseph Jacquez
May 24, 2014; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves left fielder Justin Upton (8) hits a double against the Colorado Rockies in the sixth inning at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
The Diamondbacks are on a bit of a role. Over the past two games they have scored 28 runs on 39 hits, and have won three games in a row. The Snakes are on a three game winning streak and return for a homestand against the Braves and Astros. This week is obviously all about the MLB First Year Player Draft, and I’m sure that that will be talked about alot but there is still baseball to be played, and the Dbacks are starting to turn a corner especially offensively. Granted they did the damage at Coors Field, we shall see if the offensive firepower can continue against the Braves as a four game series starts tonight.
The Braves are tied for first place in the East with the Marlins after losing two in a row, the Fish have won four in a row. The Braves have a great starting rotation and their bullpen is lights out, that is what makes that team good. They also have some dangerous hitters namely Freddie Freeman, and the guy were going to get to who all Dbacks fans are familiar with.
Key Storyline: Whenever the Diamondbacks play against Justin Upton and the Braves the trade that Kevin Towers made always comes up. The trade that sent Upton and Chris Johnson to the Braves for Randall Delgado, Martin Prado, and Zeke Spurill. For the Dbacks Prado has been ok. He was second on the team in RBI’s after heating up in the second half of last season, but for the most part has struggled this season. Delgado was in the rotation at the beginning of the year, but has really struggled, and is not panning out in Arizona, though the bullpen might end up being a good option for him long term. Spurill has made a couple of starts for Arizona but has been mainly in the minors. Meanwhile the Dbacks traded a talent that was just getting into his prime and he is performing this season again. He is batting .293 with 13 HR and 33 RBI’s, that is more RBI’s than most of the Dbacks players. So far this trade is really hurting Arizona but we shall see what happens long term.
Game by Game:
Game 1: Julio Tehran vs Brandon McCarthy
Tehran has been pitching like a CY Young Award candidate so far this year for Atlanta…He is 5-3 with a 1.83 era…McCarthy is the next starter tasked with stopping Jason Heyward. Heyward is on fire and has been making most pitchers look bad…McCarthy is 1-7 and has been up in down in all of his outings…He has a few quality innings and then he falters…Many believe he is on the trade block.
Game 2: RHP Ervin Santana vs. LHP Wade Miley
Santana posted a 1.99 era through his first six starts, but since has posted a 1-2 record and an era over 7.00….Its been one of those years for Santana…Miley has not pitched well of late…He hasn’t picked up a win since May 10th.
Game 3: RHP Aaron Harang vs. RHP Chase Anderson
Harang has put together a nice year in his first year with Atlanta allowing two runs or less in 8 of his 10 starts…Anderson has been historical for the Dbacks this season winning his first four starts with an era under 4, he is the only Dbacks rookie to win his first four starts…He gave up one earned run in six innings in his last start in Colorado.
Series Prediction: For some reason the Dbacks haven’t been able to play well at home. I say the Dbacks will loose both game 1 and game 2. Miley and McCarthy have not been pitching well. I will ride with Chase Anderson in game 3 because of how well he has pitched this season. Arizona wins one of three games.