The Mets begin a three-game series with the Atlanta Braves tonight at 7:10.
The Braves come into this series red-hot and look like they are going to challenge the Nationals for the NL East crown. Atlanta has won seven of their last ten, and 12 of their last 15 games. They currently sit only four and a half back of Washington.
The Braves, as of late, have looked more like a team that could play well into October as opposed to a team that could barely get into the playoffs. They have gotten solid production from expected (and unexpected) places in their lineup that have really helped them stay alive.
Balance is one word that perfectly describes the Braves. Their offense and their pitching staff are both very solid. They rank in the middle of the pack in most major offensive categories and the same is true for the pitching staff as well. That, combined with new acquisitions and a dominant bullpen, make the Braves very dangerous, and very tough to beat.
How They Compare
Game 1- Tonight 7:10
Matt Harvey RHP (16.1 IP, 100 ERA+, 1.34 WHIP, 3.29 K/BB)
Paul Maholm (L) (127.1 IP, 107 ERA+, 1.23 WHIP, 2.47 K/BB)
Game 2- Saturday 7:10
Johan Santana (L) (110.2 IP, 95 ERA+, 1.26 WHIP, 2.76 K/BB)
Kris Medlen (R) (64.2 IP, 171 ERA+, 1.09 WHIP, 2.81 K/BB)
Game 3- Sunday 8:10
Jonathon Niese (L) (136.2 IP, 99 ERA+, 1.18 WHIP, 3.22 K/BB)
Ben Sheets (R) (32 IP, 289 ERA+, 1.18 WHIP, 3.29 K/BB)
- Chipper Jones (S) - .316/.395/.508, 10 HR, 11.5 BB%, 10.5 K%
- Jason Heyward (L) - .269/.344/.477, 18 HR, 9.9 BB%, 25.1 K%
- Michael Bourn (L) - .289/.347/.424, 9 HR, 8.2 BB%, 21.4 K%
- Chipper Jones has been red-hot lately. Jones has hit .354 since the beginning of July with four home runs. Jones is having quite a season for someone his age, a season that he claims will be his last.
- While Jones has picked up the production, Michael Bourn’s has dropped. He is hitting .248 with a .329 OBP since July 1.
- Ben Sheets may have had his best outing as a Brave yet in his last start. Sheets went 7.1 innings, allowing one run on seven hits. In four of Sheets’ five starts, he has allowed one run or fewer.
- Jair Jurrjens was recently sent back down to the minors after being given another chance with the Braves last month. In July, Jurrjens struggled again, allowing 17 earned runs (20 total) in 18.2 innings. Jurrjens’ struggles may be due to arm wear. He has lost a few miles per hour on his fastball, which we saw when he faced the Mets in April.
- Craig Kimbrel is having another outstanding season for Atlanta. Kimbrel has a 1.26 ERA in 43 innings this season, and has a 0.75 ERA since June 1.
- Let’s go Mets!