The Atlanta Braves ride a six-game winning streak into Sunday’s series finale and turns to a pitcher who has not thrown a major-league pitch in two years to try and sweep the New York Mets. Ben Sheets takes the mound for the Braves, looking to bolster Atlanta’s starting rotation. Sheets last pitched in the majors with Oakland in 2010, going 4-9 with a 4.53 ERA in 20 starts. The Mets have lost four of their past five and are 2 ½ games behind second-place Atlanta in the NL East.
New York looks for ace Johan Santana to bounce back from a rough outing in his final start before the All-Star break. Lucas Duda likely will miss the next couple of games with a strained left hamstring. The Braves also are experiencing injury woes, having to start left fielder Martin Prado at shortstop on Saturday due to a lack of depth at that position.
Mets Braves Betting
When: 1:35 PM ET, Sunday, July 15, 2012
Where: Turner Field, Atlanta, Georgia
TV: 1:35 p.m. ET, SNY (New York), Fox Sports South (Atlanta).
PITCHING MATCHUP: New York LH Johan Santana (6-5, 3.24 ERA) vs. Atlanta RH Ben Sheets (2012 Double-A: 0-1, 5.06).
Santana experienced his worst outing of the season in his final start before the All-Star break, giving up 13 hits and seven earned runs in 4 2/3 innings in a loss to the Chicago Cubs. Santana had won three of his previous four starts before losing to Chicago.
Sheets made two starts at Double-A Mississippi, allowing 12 hits and six earned runs in 10 2/3 innings. Sheets struck out 10 and walked one in his minor-league stint. He won double-digit games six times with Milwaukee in the 2000, and is hoping to recover from major arm injuries in his return to the majors.
1. To make room for Sheets on the 25-man roster, the Braves sent Randall Delgado to Triple-A Gwinnett. Delgado may be brought back to pitch in next Saturday’s doubleheader at Washington.
2. New York CF Andres Torres went 3-for-4 on Saturday with two runs scored. Torres has struggled at the plate all season, but raised his average to .217 with Saturday’s effort.
3. Atlanta placed SS Jack Wilson on the disabled list with a dislocated pinkie finger. The Braves promoted Tyler Pastornicky to the major-league roster for depth at shortstop, and traded for Cincinnati shortstop Paul Janish.