A clash between two of the National League’s finest teams begins on Thursday as the Los Angeles Dodgers travel to SunTrust Park to take on the Atlanta Braves.
The Braves are coming into this game having won just 4 out of their last 10 games while the Dodgers are winners of 7 out of 10. Both teams are near the top of their respective divisions with the Dodgers sitting atop the NL West and the Braves in second, just behind the Philadelphia Phillies’ 0.5 game lead in the NL East. Both teams are desperate for a series win as it would allow them to gain leverage in their respective division races.
How Do They Stack Up Against Eachother?
So far this season, the Dodgers are 2-1 against the Braves following their series back in early June. In this series, L.A. outscored Atlanta 17-10 and limited the Braves to just 3.3 runs per game. This is shocking due to the fact that Atlanta is ranked 8th in the MLB in runs this year, which is right behind the Dodgers at 7.
In the month of July, however, Atlanta ranks near the bottom of the league in runs scored with just 71 so far. The Dodgers haven’t regressed whatsoever and still rank 7th in the Majors in runs scored in July with 99 runs in the month so far.
The Dodgers aren’t getting any worse either as they recently acquired superstar Shortstop Manny Machado. The Braves shouldn’t fret, however, as they have had success against Machado in his 6 year career. In 29 plate appearances vs. the Braves, Machado has just 6 hits and 1 home run.
One Dodger to look out for this series is 3rd Baseman Max Muncy. In just 3 games vs. Atlanta this year, Muncy has a staggering .571 batting average, 3 home runs, and an OPS of 2.750. The Atlanta Brave player to look out is Catcher Tyler Flowers. Flowers has a .375 batting average and has driven in a team-high 3 RBIs in just 2 games played vs. the Dodgers this season.
Despite not choosing a starter yet, the Dodgers pitching staff has been lights-out vs. the Braves this season. L.A. pitchers have an average ERA of 2.67 against the Braves and have been hot lately as well, as they have a team ERA of 3.34 and have given up just 31 hits since the All-Star Break.
Taking the mound for the Braves tomorrow is RHP Anibal Sanchez. Sanchez has had a great month of July, posting a 2.92 ERA in 4 starts in this time period. Sanchez also has a 3.38 ERA vs. the Dodgers this season as he got a win against them back in June.