=== Braves lean on Wood for opener with Mets ===
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Atlanta Braves hope for another strong showing from
Alex Wood on Tuesday when they start a three-game series with the New York
Mets at Citi Field.
Wood has been tremendous this season for the Braves, going 9-9 with a 3.05
ERA. However, since moving to the rotation the 23-year-old left-hander has
pitched to a 2.83 ERA and 1.14 WHIP.
"He's been nails," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "I don't believe in
wins and losses for a pitcher. He's been terrific. I talked to him a little
bit today, and he goes, 'Skipper, I want the ball in the eighth inning. I want
to be that elite-type pitcher in the Major Leagues.' And I think it was a good
learning experience for him."
Atlanta lost the final two games of its four-game set with the Cincinnati Reds
over the weekend and comes into this contest trailing the Washington Nationals
by 7 1/2 games in the National League East.
The Braves could get themselves back on track against a Mets team that has
lost five of seven and is 14 1/2 games off the pace in the division. New York,
though, just completed a 2-3 road trip that ended with an impressive 11-3 win
over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday.
Lucas Duda homered twice in the win, while Ruben Tejada hit a two-run homer
and Travis d'Arnaud added a solo blast.
"I'm glad I was able to contribute," said Duda. "I got a couple of pitches up.
As long as they go out, I don't care how far they go."
Getting the call for the Mets tonight will be righty Dillon Gee, who has lost
his last five decisions. Gee lost in Oakland last Tuesday, as he allowed for
runs and eight hits in 5 2/3 innings to fall to 4-6 on the year to go along
with a 3.84 ERA.
Gee hasn't won since beating the Braves back on July 9.
"It's been very frustrating," Gee said following the loss to the A's. "But all
you can do is try to take the positives from each outing and keep working
hard, and try to turn it around."
Gee is 5-4 in 13 starts versus the Braves with a 2.80 ERA.
Atlanta is 7-6 against the Mets this season.
08/26 10:37:13 ET