National League Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, May 7th
(All times Eastern)
Atlanta Braves (18-11) at Chicago Cubs (11-17), 8:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Atlanta - Tommy Hanson (3-2, 3.74)
Chicago - Jeff Samardzija (3-1, 3.41)
(Sports Network) - While one ballclub is nearing the top of its respective
division, the other resides in the basement.
The Atlanta Braves sit one-half game behind Washington in the National League
East standings and will resume a nine-game road trip Monday with the first of
three games against the NL Central's last-place team, the Chicago Cubs.
Atlanta heads to historic Wrigley Field fresh off a three-game sweep of the
Colorado Rockies and broke out the brooms with Sunday's 7-2 triumph. Freddie
Freeman hit a three-run homer and Dan Uggla added a solo shot with a pair of
RBI for Atlanta, which recorded its first road sweep of the Rockies since
Brandon Beachy started for the Braves and was solid in giving up two runs over
6 1/3 innings with five strikeouts and three walks.
"There's a part of me that says you have to tip your cap to the job that
(Beachy) did," said Rockies manager Jim Tracy. "What he did today is what we
didn't do in the first two games of this series."
The Braves are averaging eight runs in their last five games and will send
Tommy Hanson to the mound in tonight's series opener. Hanson is 3-2 with a
3.74 ERA in six starts and did not perform well the last time out in a 15-13
win over Philadelphia last Wednesday. Hanson lasted just 3 2/3 innings and was
reached for four runs and eight hits before Atlanta's bats woke up to get him
Hanson, a right-hander, is 0-2 with a 5.23 ERA lifetime against the Cubs.
Chicago will resume a six-game homestand tonight and has alternated wins and
losses through its past 11 games. It is coming off Sunday's 4-3 win in 11
innings against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
David DeJesus walked with the bases loaded in the 11th, scoring Darwin Barney
for the game-winner. Starlin Castro had two RBI, Bryan LaHair collected three
hits and Tony Campana had two hits and drove in a run for the Cubs.
"It took almost all 25 guys to do it, let alone the sick guys coming off the
bench to do it, so it was a nice little team effort there," said Cubs manager
Cubs starter Travis Wood, who had two hits and a run scored, did not record a
decision with six innings of three-run ball. Rafael Dolis tossed the final two
innings for the win.
Jeff Samardzija will make his sixth start tonight for Chicago and is 3-1 with
a 3.41 earned run average. In a 3-1 win at Cincinnati last Wednesday,
Samardzija held the Reds to a run and three hits in 7 2/3 innings. He also
fanned seven and walked two batters.
The righty has no record and a 5.68 ERA in six career relief appearances
against the Braves, spanning 6 1/3 frames.
Chicago lost four of seven matchups with the Braves a year ago.
05/07 11:09:10 ET