Winners of seven of their last eight contests, the Atlanta Braves will look to continue that momentum as they begin a seven-game road trip against theArizona Diamondbacks on Thursday. The Braves’ loud bats were in full swing against the NL East rival New York Mets as they scored 23 runs to take the final two games of their series.
While Atlanta is surging, Arizona is hurting – both physically and in the standings. After putting All-Star outfielder Chris Young on the disabled list with a right shoulder injury, the Diamondbacks fell for the fourth time in six games with a 2-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday.
Braves Diamondbacks Betting
When: 9:40 PM ET, Thursday, April 19, 2012
Where: Chase Field, Phoenix, Arizona
TV: 9:40 p.m. ET, SPSO (Atlanta), FSAZ (Arizona)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Braves LH Mike Minor (1-1, 4.38 ERA) vs. Diamondbacks RH Josh Collmenter (0-0, 12.86 ERA)
After a brutal season opener, Minor righted the ship by allowing just one run on two hits in 7 1/3 innings in a 2-1 triumph over the Milwaukee Brewers on Saturday. The 24-year-old Minor has yet to face the Diamondbacks in his young career.
Collmenter has made two abbreviated starts this season, yielding five earned runs on both occasions before departing without a decision. He struggled with his control by walking three in four innings in his last outing against the Colorado Rockies on Saturday. The 26-year-old tossed five scoreless innings in a no-decision against the Braves during his rookie season.
1. Arizona’s Justin Upton, who is nursing a thumb injury, entered Wednesday’s game in the ninth inning as a pinch runner. Jason Kubel started in his place and had an RBI single.
2. Freddie Freeman, who belted a two-run homer in Atlanta’s 14-6 victory on Wednesday, has three hits in five career at-bats versus Collmenter. Jason Heyward, however, has struggled – going 0-for-6 with a pair of strikeouts.
3. The Diamondbacks have gotten out of the blocks quickly. They have scored in the first inning in 10 of the 12 games they’ve played this season.