Series preview: Braves at Reds
When (TV): 7:10 p.m. Monday-Thursday (SPSO).
Radio: 680, 93.7, 100.5
Probable starting pitchers:
Monday: Braves LH Mike Minor (2-3, 7.09 ERA) vs. RH Mike Leake (0-5, 6.21)
Tuesday: Braves RH Brandon Beachy (5-1, 1.33) vs. RH Mat Latos (2-2, 4.63)
Wednesday: Braves RH Tommy Hanson (5-3, 3.31) vs. RH Bronson Arroyo (2-2, 3.46)
Thursday: Braves RH Randall Delgado (2-4, 4.26) vs. RH Homer Bailey (2-3, 4.34)
About the Braves:
Batting: Brian McCann has a .340 average with 15 homers and 31 RBIs in 40 games against the Reds, including a .390 average with seven homers and nine RBIs in his past 12 games against them. He’s hit .346 (28-for-81) with 10 homers and 19 RBIs in 21 games at Cincinnati…. Dan Uggla has hit .297 (22-for-74) with seven homers, 17 RBIs and a .622 slugging percentage in 20 games at Cincy’s Great American Ballpark…. Against Leake, McCann is 2-for-5, Uggla is 1-for-4 with a homer, Martin Prado is 3-for-6, and Michael Bourn is 5-for-16.
Pitching: Minor is 0-2 with an 11.76 ERA and .360 opponents’ average in his past four starts, allowing at least six earned runs in each and lasting five innings or fewer in the past three. Left-handed batters have hit .356 (16-for-45) with a .396 OBP against the lefty. Minor hasn’t faced the Reds, and Ryan Ludwick (2-for-3) is the only Cincinnati hitter with more than two at-bats against him…. Beachy allowed one earned run and five hits in six innings of his only start against the Reds, in Cincinnati…. Hanson is 1-2 with a 5.03 ERA in four starts against the Reds, and Delgado pitched 6-2/3 innings of four-hit ball (one earned run) against them last week and got no decision.
Miscellaneous: All four games in the series are night games. The Braves are 20-9 at night with a league-high 162 runs in night games. No other NL team had as many as 140 runs in night games…. Juan Francisco, traded from the Reds to Atlanta late in spring training, has a .247 career average with three homers, 10 RBIs and a .310 OBP in 77 at-bats (42 games) at Great American Ballpark.
About the Reds:
Batting: Joey Votto was 21-for-60 (.350) with six homers, 17 RBIs and a .494 OBP in his past 18 games before Sunday. The first baseman has hit .362 with nine doubles, five homers, 16 RBIs and a .479 OBP in 17 home games this season…. Jay Bruce has hit .361 with seven homers, 19 RBIs and an .803 slugging percentage in 17 home games. Votto and Bruce have 12 of the Reds’ 18 homers at Great American Ballpark.
Pitching: Leake is 0-3 with an 8.53 ERA in three home starts, with 21 hits including four homers allowed in 12-2/3 innings. He hasn’t made it out of the fourth inning in his past two home starts. Leake is 1-0 with a 1.50 ERA in two starts against the Braves, one each of the past two seasons…. Among other starters in the series, against the Braves Latos is 2-2 with a 2.43 ERA in five starts, Arroyo is 6-3 with a 5.68 ERA in 15 games (14 starts), and Bailey is 1-0 with a 2.13 ERA in two starts including no decision on Monday (6-2/3 innings, six hits, one run).
Miscellaneous: The Reds are 4-5 with a 3.73 ERA in their past nine home games, totaling 10 homers in that stretch and scoring at least four runs in six of nine games…. Scott Rolen has hit just .146 with two homers in 15 home games…. The Braves have a 7-6 record against the Reds since the beginning of the 2010 season, including 2-4 in a pair of series losses at Cincinnati. The teams split last week’s two-game series in Atlanta.
– David O’Brien