National League Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, May 24th (All times Eastern)
Colorado Rockies (26-22) at Atlanta Braves (27-20), 4:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Colorado - Juan Nicasio (4-2, 4.03) Atlanta - Mike Minor (2-2, 3.80)
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Colorado Rockies look to even their three-game series with the Atlanta Braves when the two clubs tangle Saturday from Turner Field.
The Rockies opened a 10-day, nine-game road trip with Friday's 3-2 loss, as the Braves went ahead for good in the bottom of the eighth inning on Gerald Laird's RBI single with two out. He scored Ramiro Pena, who led off with a double.
Adam Ottavino was saddled with the loss in 1 1/3 innings of relief and Rockies starter Jordan Lyles fired six innings of two-run ball. Lyles struck out six and walked one batter.
Michael Cuddyer homered and Jordan Pacheco had the other RBI for the Rockies, who were coming off a rain-shortened tie versus San Francisco and haven't won since Tuesday.
Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado left the game with a mallet fracture in his left middle finger after a head-first slide.
"It's unfortunate. That definitely hurts a lot more than the single loss tonight," Lyles said of Arenado.
Arenado is expected to see a specialist and will know if surgery is needed. Arenado is batting .305 with six homers and 28 RBI this season, and had a franchise-best 28-game hit streak early on.
"He's got a fractured finger, so he's going to miss some time," Colorado manager Walt Weiss said. "That's tough news for our club. He was off to a great start."
Rockies slugging outfielder Carlos Gonzalez was out of the lineup for a second straight game because of a balky left index finger. He is day-to-day.
The Rockies are 10-15 away from Coors Field, where they own a 16-7 mark.
Colorado, which is scheduled to visit Philadelphia and Cleveland on the trip, will hand the ball to Juan Nicasio Saturday and he is 4-2 in nine starts with a 4.03 earned run average. He is 0-1 in his past two appearances and did not record a decision in Sunday's 8-6 win over San Diego, charged with four runs and nine hits in six innings.
Nicasio has made four career starts against the Braves, going 0-3 with a lofty 9.82 ERA.
The Braves have won two in a row and five of six games, and pushed their mark to 4-1 on this nine-game homestand.
Laird had the big hit in the eighth to snap a 2-2 tie and closer Craig Kimbrel struck out the side in the ninth for his 13th save. Kimbrel is now two saves shy of matching John Smoltz (154) for the franchise lead.
Laird had two hits and two RBI, Jason Heyward ended with a pair of hits and B.J. Upton went 2-for-3 with a run scored for Atlanta. Heyward has hit safely in a Braves season-best 11 straight games.
"He's come up big. He sticks his nose in there and he's gonna make contact," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said about Laird.
Gavin Floyd drew the start for Atlanta and pitched well in the no-decision, allowing two runs over 6 2/3 frames. David Carpenter hurled a scoreless eighth inning for the win (4-0).
The NL East-leading Braves are 17-3 when scoring first and 10-17 when the opponent opens the scoring. They lead the major leagues with a 2.84 ERA and will send Mike Minor to the mound Saturday. Minor will make his fifth start of the season and has won back-to-back trips to the mound after losing the first two.
Minor held Milwaukee to two runs in 6 2/3 innings of a 9-3 win on Monday and lowered his ERA from 4.24 to 3.80. The left-hander looks to stay unbeaten in his career against Colorado and is 3-0 with a 3.96 ERA in four starts.
The Braves won six of seven games against the Rockies a season ago and swept a four-game set at Turner Field from July 29 - Aug. 1. Colorado has lost seven in a row in Atlanta.
05/24 10:39:47 ET