National League Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, July 4th
(All times Eastern)
Chicago Cubs (30-50) at Atlanta Braves (42-38), 7:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Chicago - Paul Maholm (5-6, 4.84)
Atlanta - Randall Delgado (4-8, 4.52)
(Sports Network) - Southpaw Paul Maholm aims for a second 2012 defeat of the
Atlanta Braves tonight, when the Chicago Cubs visit them for game three of a
four-game series at Turner Field.
A Mississippi native who turned 30 last month, Maholm ended a four-decision
skid on June 29 with 8 1/3 innings of scoreless four-hit ball in a 4-0 defeat
of the Houston Astros at Wrigley Field.
In eight previous starts, Maholm had gone 0-4 while watching his season earned
run average swell from 4.05 to 5.38.
The Cubs dropped seven of those eight starts while being outscored, 48-24.
Maholm's last victory had come against the Braves on May 9, when he spun seven
innings of scoreless three-hit ball in a 1-0 victory.
The former first-round draft choice - eighth overall, 2003 - walked three and
struck out three in that victory, his second in three decisions across seven
career matchups with Atlanta.
Maholm has held the Braves to only seven earned runs in 47 innings, a stingy
Atlanta replies with Panamanian-born right-hander Randall Delgado, who'll try
to end his own four-start drought.
The 22-year-old, who debuted in the majors with seven starts last season, was
4-5 this year after a 2-1 win at Miami on June 6.
He was 0-3 with a no-decision in his final four starts of the month, allowing
22 hits and 13 runs in 18 1/3 innings against the New York Yankees (loss),
Baltimore (loss), Boston (loss) and Washington (no-decision).
Delgado allowed a run on three hits in 5 2/3 innings against the Cubs on May
8, when he won a 3-1 decision in his only previous meeting with Chicago.
In Tuesday's second game, Chipper Jones picked up his third career five-hit
game and knocked in four runs in the Braves' 10-3 win.
"Just feel fortunate that I'm swinging the bat really good right now when the
team needs it," Jones said.
Michael Bourn delivered a bases-clearing triple in the Braves' come-from-
behind five-run fifth inning and scored three times.
Jair Jurrjens (2-2) picked up the win after allowing three unearned runs on
nine hits in five innings.
Jurrjens was sent to the minor leagues after struggling in his first four
starts, in which he was 0-2 with a 9.37 ERA. In three starts since being
recalled on June 22, the 26-year-old right-hander is 2-0 with a 1.49 ERA.
Chris Volstad (0-7) was in line for his first win since July 10, 2011, but he
imploded in the fifth. Volstad lasted 4 1/3 innings, allowing six runs on
seven hits and two walks. He has lost 12 straight decisions.
"I just think it's me wanting to be a competitor," Volstad said. "I get
runners on base and I'm trying to win the game, and we're ahead, and it's just
bad thinking on my part.
"It's just a matter of me wanting to be perfect and I can't expect that of
myself. It's definitely a learning experience for sure."
Chicago won two of three games from the Braves in a May series at Wrigley
Field. Atlanta won four of seven from the Cubs last season. Chicago last won
the season series in 2008.
07/04 10:32:06 ET
Powered by The Sports Network.