The Atlanta Braves haven’t lost consecutive games in three weeks – a trend that’s likely to keep them in position to make the postseason if they can keep it up, and one they’ll try to continue when they open a four-game home series with the San Diego Padres. Atlanta finished a 4-2 road trip with a 6-5 loss to the New York Mets on Sunday, as a ninth-inning rally came up just shy, but the Braves remain 4 1/2 games behind Washington in the National League East and in line for the second wild card.
The Padres certainly haven’t laid down after a rough first half. They’re 17-12 since the All-Star break and have won three straight series, including two of three at playoff contender Pittsburgh over the weekend. San Diego’s six-game losing streak – matching its longest of the season – came to an end in an 11-5 loss Sunday.
Padres Braves Betting
When: 7:10 PM ET, Monday, August 13, 2012
Where: Turner Field, Atlanta, Georgia
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, Fox Sports San Diego, SportSouth
PITCHING MATCHUP: Padres LH Eric Stults (2-2, 2.72 ERA) vs. Braves LH Mike Minor (6-8, 4.95)
Stults has bounced between the bullpen and the rotation, and his latest turn as a starter began with a bang, as he tossed 5 1/3 scoreless innings to beat the Cubs on Monday. Stults has made one start and four relief appearances against the Braves, going 0-2 with a 4.11 ERA.
Minor has allowed three runs or fewer in six straight outings – five of them quality starts – lowering his ERA from 6.20 to 4.95 since the end of June. Over that span, he is 2-2 with a 2.13 ERA. Minor took a tough-luck loss at Philadelphia on Tuesday, allowing three runs over seven innings in a 3-0 defeat. He has made one start against the Padres and allowed three runs over six innings in a loss last season.
1. The Braves are 42-13 in games in which leadoff man Michael Bourn has at least one hit and scores at least one run.
2. Braves 3B Chipper Jones is five hits shy of 2,700. He ranks 64th all-time and fifth among active players.
3. Padres 3B Chase Headley went 0-for-5 Sunday, snapping a seven-game hitting streak and marking just his second game without a hit in his past 15 contests. Headley is hitting .339 (19-for-56) with six homers and 19 RBIs since July 28.