The Braves come into tonight's game having won 12 of their last 16 games. They currently lead the NL Wild Card race and hope to stay on top over these next four games. They will send Mike Minor to the mound to try to open up the series with a win. In each of his last six starts, he's given up no more than three runs. Although his last outing was a loss to the Phillies, he had a great six-game stretch where he went 3-1 with a 2.50 ERA prior to that.
The Braves offense will need to give Minor some run support to make up for his last start. Chipper Jones, who is close to getting his 2,700th career hit, will try to lead the way and Freddie Freeman has been riding a hot bat lately. Over his last 14 games, Freeman is hitting .360 with 15 RBI.
The Padres side of tonight's lefty-on-lefty matchup will feature Eric Stults, who returned to the rotation last week and put up a very solid outing. He went 5 1/3 scoreless innings, struck out five, and came out on the winning end of a 2-0 decision against the Cubs. Tonight he'll be going for his third win of the year as he helps our boys bounce back from yesterday's loss.
Chase Headley, who leads our Padres in batting average and home runs, had a phenomenal series in Pittsburgh and will try to keep his hot steak alive in Atlanta. He ended a seven-game hitting streak in the series finale against the Pirates, so he'll have to start a new one tonight. Over his last 15 games, he's hitting .339 with six home runs and 20 RBI. Carlos Quentin has also been riding a hot streak of his own. He didn't get a hit either in yesterday's game, but prior to that he had a five-game hitting streak going. Over his last six games, he's hit two doubles and two home runs while knocking in five runs and scoring four of his own.