Category Archives: Sports

Washington Redskins at New York Giants

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Who: Redskins (1-1) at Giants (0-2)
What: Week 3 on Thursday Night Football
When: Thursday, 8:25 p.m. (ET)
Where: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford
All-time: Series tied, 97-65-4
Recent Streak: Ginats have won four straight
Last meeting: Giants, 24-13

The Washington Redskins travel up the coast to MetLife Stadium to take on the New York Giants in Week 3.

The Redskins are riding high after a dominating 24-10 performance against the St. Louis Rams, while the Giants already find themselves in a 0-2 hole fighting for relevance in the NFC East. Both are seeking to take advantage of a very vulnerable NFC East division, with Philadelphia struggling at 0-2 and Dallas, at 2-0, missing its two best offensive players in Tony Romo and Dez Bryant.

The Giants have had a heartbreaking first two weeks, losing in the last two minutes of each game. Tony Romo created some magic and pulled one out at the very last second, and the Atlanta Falcons got the job done late in the game as well. It’s hard to believe that Eli Manningand the Giants will let another loss happen.

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The Redskins came out like a bat out of hell in the first half of the Rams game last week, compiling a 17-0 first half lead led by the powerful running of Matt Jones and Alfred Morris, along with the consistent play of Kirk Cousins. The hometown boys cruised to a 24-10 win. Most Redskins fans agree that it may have been the most complete first half, and perhaps game, they had seen in quite some time.

The Giants have had a pretty rough time getting out of the gates in this 2015 campaign. In both games they have held a sizable lead, only to blow leads of 23-13 vs. the Cowboys and 20-10 to the Falcons (both in the 4th quarter). The G-Men are going to come after the Redskins hard, as the annual rumblings about Tom Coughlin’s job have surfaced and the Giants can ill afford to start the season 0-3.

Each of these teams’ 2 meetings last year was a pretty one-sided affair in the Giants’ favor. Kirk Cousins started in one of those games, another Thursday night matchup at home, in which he threw 4 interceptions in a 45-14 rout. The Redskins are hoping that Kirk does not repeat this performance en route to a similar defeat. The last time the Redskins traveled to MetLife Stadium, Odell Beckham scored 3 TDs and the Giants handled the Redskins 24-13. The Redskins’ secondary hopes to eliminate the memory of that game with a good performance as well.

This NFC East showdown against the Washington Redskins will play a massive role in determining what type of season the G-Men have in 2015. If they fall to 0-3, they may never recover, especially with a Week 4 road game in Buffalo next.

Expect the Giants to bring their best possible game and for this one to be exciting throughout.

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Milwaukee Brewers at Chicago Cubs

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(foxsports.com)- As the Chicago Cubs move closer to securing their first postseason berth since 2008, they continue to enjoy everything about the experience.

They’ll look to keep the good times coming by completing a series sweep with their 10th straight victory over the visiting Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday night.

Hours after manager Joe Maddon set up a small petting zoo in the Wrigley Field outfield for his players and their families to enjoy, Jake Arrieta struck out 11 while tossing a three-hitter to become the majors’ first 20-game winner in Tuesday’s 4-0 victory.

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Winners in seven of the last eight, the Cubs (89-62) trimmed their magic number to clinch a playoff spot to three. While it seems likely Chicago will open the postseason with a one-game wild-card contest, it’s poised to build more momentum, enjoy itself and see what happens.

“I think it’s just preparing us for the postseason,” said Arrieta, the first Cub to win 20 since 2001. “It’s getting better as the season goes on. … It’s been a lot of fun. We need to keep moving forward.”

Kris Bryant set a Cubs rookie record with his 26th home run and raised his RBI total to 98 with three more. He’s batting .481 in the last seven games, and .391 in the last six against Milwaukee (63-88).

“He’s going to hit a lot of home runs,” said Hall of Famer Billy Williams, who previously held that club record since 1961. “He’s got a home run swing that’s perfect for Wrigley Field.”

While Arrieta is likely to start that expected wild-card game, and Jon Lester would then take the ball should the Cubs advance, the rest of a potential division series rotation gets a bit murky with Jason HammelDan Harenand Kyle Hendricks (7-6, 4.22 ERA) all struggling of late.

Hendricks will have at least two more chances to prove his worth for any playoff role after going 3-2 with a 5.29 ERA in 12 second-half starts. He gave up four runs on three homers in a season-low three innings of Thursday’s 9-6 win at Pittsburgh.

The right-hander’s best outing since the All-Star break came Aug. 1 when he allowed his only run in two starts this season against the Brewers, lasting seven innings of a 4-2 victory.

Khris Davis is 4 for 9 against Hendricks and batting .355 in the last nine games. Teammate Ryan Braun took batting practice Tuesday but could miss a fifth straight game with a back problem.

Losers in 12 of the last 14, Milwaukee has totaled 20 runs, hit .195 and struck out 87 times during its nine-game skid to the Cubs, who get their first look at Zach Davies (1-2, 6.00).

The right-hander didn’t walk a batter while lasting seven innings to earn his first win in his second career start at Miami on Sept. 7. Since, he’s walked nine while giving up nine runs and 11 hits in 9 2-3 innings to lose two in a row.

“Just losing a bit of the command,” Davies said after allowing four of those walks in six innings of Friday’s 5-3 loss to Cincinnati.

 

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ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED BY: foxsports.com

San Francisco Giants at San Diego Padres

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The San Francisco Giants are mathematically alive for a postseason berth and it might stay that way a little longer as they visit the San Diego Padres on Tuesday in the opener of a three-game series.

The San Francisco Giants begin the stretch drive looking to go on a season ending hot streak. The Giants knocked off Arizona 5-1 Sunday to avoid getting swept at home. Veteran Tim Hudson came up big with a four hits shutout over six frames to even his record at 8-8 and the offense didn’t waste the effort. SF mustered six hits and walked four times with Buster Posey clubbing a three run bomb while Matt Duffy scored twice. Christopher Heston gets Tuesday’s start against the Padres for the 4th time this year. Heston did not get a decision in a 9-8 loss to Cincinnati with three runs scored on three hits and four BB in five frames.

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The San Diego Padres had held out hopes of finishing the season at .500 but that would be a stretch right now. The Padres will be shooting for consecutive victories following a 10-4 win at Coors Field on Sunday. Everything went well with starter James Shields holding the Rockies to four runs on two hits and four BB through 6.2 innings. The offense amassed 15 hits with Matt Kemp, Yangervis Solarte, Cory Spangenberg and Jedd Gyorko each slamming long balls. Tyson Ross gets the series opening start against San Francisco for the third time on the year. Ross did not receive a decision in a 6-4 loss at Arizona with a lone run allowed over six innings.

San Francisco are 5-16 in their last 21 road games. The over is 8-1 in San Diego’s last 9 vs. National League West and  is 16-5-1 in their last 22 games following a win while going  36-13-2 in their last 51 overall. San Francisco are 3-7 in the last 10 meetings in San Diego

PITCHING MATCHUP:

Giants RH Chris Heston (11-10, 3.61 ERA) vs. Padres RH Tyson Ross (10-10, 3.18)Heston received a no-decision after allowing three runs, three hits and four walks while striking out eight in five innings of San Francisco’s 9-8 loss to Cincinnati on Sept. 15. The 27-year-old Floridian won his first two starts coming out of the All-Star break – including one over San Diego – before posting a 5.12 ERA during his slide. Heston is 2-1 with a 3.26 ERA in three starts covering 19 1/3 innings versus the Padres this season.Ross settled for a no-decision after permitting one run and four hits while matching a season high with nine strikeouts in six innings of San Diego’s 6-4 loss in Arizona on Sept. 15. The 28-year-old Californian’s last victory came Aug. 31, when he yielded three hits and fanned seven in seven innings of a 7-0 victory over Texas. Ross is 3-3 with a 3.69 ERA in nine games (seven starts) against the Giants – 1-1, 3.46 in two turns early this season.

WALK-OFFS

  1. Ross has 194 strikeouts – one shy of his career high – and needs six to reach 200, which would mark the first time in Padres history two pitchers reached that plateau in the same season. James Shields went over 200 on Sunday
  2. San Francisco has tied a major league record with five pitchers homering in the same season – Madison Bumgarner five; Mike Leake (one with the Giants), Tim Hudson, Jake Peavy and Ryan Vogelsong (one apiece) – and its total of nine is the most since the 1934 staff belted 10.
  3. San Diego is 58-0 when leading after eight innings this season.

 

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Atlanta Braves at New York Mets

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Monday: LHP Jonathon Niese (8-10, 4.31) vs. RHP Shelby Miller (5-15, 3.00), 7:10 p.m. ET

Tuesday: RHP Logan Verrett* (1-0, 1.91) vs. RHP Matt Wisler (5-8, 5.63), 7:10 p.m. ET

Wednesday: RHP Bartolo Colon* (14-12, 4.15) vs. RHP Williams Perez (6-6, 5.16), 7:10 p.m. ET

The Atlanta Braves travel to New York to face the New York Mets in a 3-game series with the NL East division leaders. The Mets lost 2 games in a row this weekend to their cross-town rivals, the New York Yankees. The Mets had a 9.5 game lead in the NL East a week ago, but the Washington Nationals have slimmed their deficit in the division to 6 games with less than two weeks left, coming off a sweep of the Miami Marlins.

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New York (84-65) holds a six-game lead over Washington atop the NL East despite having dropped four of five after Sunday’s 11-2 loss to the Yankees. Barring a collapse, the Mets will make their first postseason appearance since 2006

The Braves (60-90), though, are coming off a weekend sweep of Philadelphia after three consecutive 2-1 wins. A.J. Pierzynski singled home the winning run in the bottom of the ninth Sunday after Julio Teheran was solid for 8 1-3.

Atlanta hasn’t won four straight since July 1-4.

Atlanta may be out of playoff contention, but can play the role of spoiler against their perennial divisional rivals during this series. It would serve the Braves well to end the season on a good note after all of their struggles in the second half of 2015. With the Mets having cooled off a bit since they swept the Atlanta Braves in a four-game series at Turner Field last weekend, a little revenge may be in order.

New York swept a four-game series in Atlanta when the clubs last faced each other Sept. 10-13. The Mets have won five of the six matchups at Citi Field.

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New York Jets at Indianapolis Colts

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Location: Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, Indiana

Date: Sept. 21

Time: 8:30 p.m. ET

The Colts 2015 home slate begins with a Monday Night Football contest against the New York Jets.

The New York Jets are coming off their most lopsided victory since October 2012. They hammered the Cleveland Browns 31-10 in their season opener last Sunday, giving some hope to those praying Gang Green can get back to the playoffs for the first time since 2010.

The Indianapolis Colts were a trendy pick to represent the AFC in Super Bowl 50, but barely looked like a fringe playoff team in their season-opening loss to the Buffalo Bills. They’ll try to avoid falling into an 0-2 hole when they host the New York Jets on Monday Night Football.

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The Jets enter this game with some surprising momentum after they throttled the Cleveland Browns in Week 1. Rex Ryan might have taken his talents upstate to Buffalo, but the Jets are still a ground-and-pound team under new head coach Todd Bowles. Their blueprint for success hasn’t changed: use an aggressive defense and ball-control offense to wear down their opponents for 60 minutes. It worked to near-perfection against the Browns, as they forced five turnovers, had three sacks, didn’t allow a single touchdown in the red zone and rushed for 154 yards in the convincing 31-10 win.

Andrew Luck has faced the Jets just once in his career and it’s a game he probably would like to forget. The Colts were blown out at the Meadowlands in Week 6 of 2012, losing 35-9 to a Jets team that would finish with double-digit losses that year. Luck completed just 50 percent of his passes and was picked off twice in one of his worst performances. Granted, he was a rookie with just four games under his belt, but his passer rating of 51.3 was the third-worst he’s ever posted in a game.

The Jets haven’t defeated an eventual playoff team on the road since beating the Steelers 22-17 in December 2010. And since then, in those 13 road games they’ve played against teams that finished above .500, they’ve been outscored by an average margin of 31-16. Nine of those 13 affairs were lost by at least two scores.

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New York Yankees at New York Mets

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(espn.go.com)- The last time the New York Mets and New York Yankees met this late in the season, it was in the 2000 World Series.

There’s a possibility they could meet in the Fall Classic this year.

The Mets will host this weekend series, with the red-hot Yoenis Cespedes getting his first taste of this rivalry Friday night.

This is the latest regular-season edition of the Subway Series, and there is plenty at stake for both teams. The Mets (83-63) have a comfortable NL East lead over Washington while the Yankees hold the AL’s top wild card as they try to catch first-place Toronto in the East.

“A lot’s been made of this weekend coming up,” Mets manager Terry Collins said. “It’s now here so now we’ve got to get ready for it.

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The Yankees (80-65) won’t have Alex Rodriguez in the lineup this weekend, with no designated hitter at Citi Field. They took two of three at home in April from the Mets, who did not have Cespedes.

Acquired July 31 from Detroit, Cespedes has become one of baseball’s biggest stories. He has 17 homers and 42 RBI in 43 games with the Mets, giving him totals of 35 and 103.

The slugger has gone consecutive games without a homer after connecting nine times in 13 games to start the month. The Mets are seeking to avoid their first three-game losing streak since Aug. 14-16.

The Mets lineup will also look different to the Yankees since David Wright andTravis d’Arnaud were out with injuries for the April series and Juan Uribe had yet to be acquired.

Collins compared facing the Yankees to his club’s three-game sweep at Washington last week that gave the Mets a commanding division lead.

“We need to approach it like it’s the Washington Nationals walking in here,” he said. “Look, it’s a game we’ve got to go play, we’re playing for something big, they are too. It’s very similar to when we played the Nationals.”

The Yankees will start Masahiro Tanaka (12-6, 3.40 ERA) on four days’ rest for the fifth time and second occasion in a row after giving him extra rest through most of the year. Tanaka improved to 3-0 with a 2.54 ERA in his last four outings after seven innings of four-hit ball in Sunday’s 5-0 victory over the Blue Jays.

“He’s throwing the ball extremely well,” manager Joe Girardi said. “We checked with him to see how he was, he said he felt good and that’s why we’re doing it. I know he hasn’t done it a lot but we need him to pitch well for us.”

The right-hander is 5-2 with a 1.97 ERA in seven career interleague starts including a four-hitter in a 4-0 road win over the Mets last year. Cespedes is 3 for 10 against him.

This will be a special outing for Steven Matz (3-0, 1.88), a Long Island native who grew up rooting for the Mets. He’ll make his fifth start, third since returning off the disabled list and first in interleague play.

The left-hander allowed one run in five innings last Friday to earn a 5-1 victory at Atlanta.

He’ll face an offense with some slumping hitters.

Brian McCann is hitting .194 in his last 10 games and Chase Headley is at .179 in his last 15. Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury each are hitting .204 since the All-Star break to rank among baseball’s worst batters.

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Clemson Tigers at Louisville Cardinals

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Date: Sept. 17
Start Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
Location: Louisville, KY
Stadium: Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium

The Clemson Tigers and Louisville Cardinals face off on Thursday night in a match-up of two teams who have started the season in opposite directions. The game is scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. start time

The Louisville Cardinals are off to an 0-2 start to the 2015 season both straight up and against the spread, and they’re also just 3-2 SU and 0-5 ATS in their last five home games. Meanwhile, Clemson owns a four-game winning streak both SUand versus the numbers.

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Louisville has started 0-2, taking on Clemson only makes the start of the season more difficult. The Cardinals put up a pretty good fourth quarter fight in their season-opening loss to Auburn and that looked like it would carry over to their home opener against Houston. It didn’t as the Cougars improved to 2-0 with a 34-31 win over Louisville, scoring 17 fourth quarter points to send Louisville to an 0-2 record.

Clemson looks like a potential national title contender this season, but it’s worth noting they’ve played Wofford and Appalachian State. Dabo Sweeney has had some excellent teams in Death Valley but the schedule has always ended up with a landmine or two. One of those games comes after the Louisville one as the Tigers host Notre Dame.

This game opened as a pick em, but with Louisville’s struggles this season Clemson has quickly taken a lot of attention. Quarterback Deshaun Watson has thrown for five touchdowns and just one pick so far in the two games and he’s poised for another big game in this one against a stingy Louisville defense. That defense has been beaten up through their first two games and Clemson might be the best offensive team between the three schools, which certainly gives an advantage for the Tigers in this one.

While Louisville will get quite a bit of attention as a touchdown underdog at home when they are in a must-win situation, this is a bad spot for them.

 

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Los Angeles Angels at Minnesota Twins

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(sportschatplace.com)- The Minnesota Twins and the Los Angeles Angels face off on Thursday at Target Field in game one of their MLB series.

The Los Angeles Angels continue to be in the Wildcard hunt in the AL as the regular season continues to wind down. The Angels are 29-41 on the road, 5-5 in their last 10 games, and they are 3.5 games out in the AL Wildcard and they are 5 games back in the AL West. As a team the Angels are hitting .243 with Mike Trout hitting .292, Erick Aybar hitting .268, and Johnny Giavotella hitting .265. The Angels pitching staff has an ERA of 3.93 with the starters at 3.97 and the bullpen at 3.85. For game one against the Twins the Angels start Hector Santiago who has allowed 139 hits and 59 earned runs while striking out 148 over 165.1 innings for an 8-9 record and a 3.21 ERA.

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The Minnesota Twins continue to play hard as the season winds down as they look to make the post-season. The Twins are 5-5 in their last 10 games, 43-28 at home, and they are 10 games behind the Royals in the AL Central standings and 1.5 games behind the Astros in the AL West standings. As a team the Twins are hitting .249 with Joe Mauer hitting .271, Trevor Plouffe hitting .250, and Torii Hunter hitting .240. The Twins pitching staff has an ERA of 4.11 with the starters at 4.17 and the bullpen at 3.99. For game one against the Angels the Twins start Tommy Milone who has allowed 114 hits and 48 earned runs while striking out 82 over 115.2 innings for an 8-5 record and a 3.73 ERA.

Minnesota is 4-1 following a loss, 9-4 in their last 13 games against a team with a winning record, and 5-2 in Milone’s last seven home starts. Los Angeles is 7-20 in their last 27 road games, 1-7 o the road against a left-handed starter, and 2-5 in Santiago’s last seven starts. Los Angeles is 9-1 in their last 10 games against Minnesota.

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ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED BY: sportschatplace.com

Rugby World Cup 2015: England vs Fiji

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Match details

Date: Friday, September 18
Time: 8 p.m. BST/3 p.m. EST
Venue: Twickenham

The 2015 Rugby World Cup will be the eighth edition of what has been called the world’s “third biggest” sports event, and fans will be able to watch host nation England take on world ninth-ranked Fiji in the opening match on Friday, kicking off a competition that is projected to sell 2.3 million tickets to its 48 games, with TV coverage in 207 nations.

England go in to the match knowing it’s a must-win before they take on Wales and Australia in the matches that will likely shape this pool, but the Fijians have danger men throughout the side capable of upsetting their hosts.

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The last time they met, during the 2012 northern autumn internationals, England had another easy 54-12 win and based on past statistics, the RWC opener should not be too much of a hurdle for the hosts to clear.

But Friday could be different, despite the odds appearing to favour England, and many are optimistic that the flying Fijians will bring their A game to Twickenham and give England some problems.

England coach Stuart Lancaster expects a tough afternoon while the Fijians have also warned their opponents from what is the toughest group at this year’s tournament that they are not in England to make up the numbers.
England are favourites to launch Pool A with a victory but the Fiji head coach, John McKee, insists his recently-crowned Pacific Nations Cup champions are ready for the biggest match in the nation’s history.

“We know we’ll have to be at our best to get the result we want on Friday night. If we’re at our best we know we can challenge them,” he said.

“We know that to be successful on Friday we will have to play for the full 80. International rugby is an 80-minute game. The core of our team has been together since June last year. We’ve been building towards this tournament all the time. Our preparation and form have been good but we know this is quite a step-up from the Pacific Nations Cup, so we need to play our game at a higher intensity.”

Lineups

England: Mike Brown, Anthony Watson, Jonathan Joseph, Brad Barritt,Jonny May, George Ford, Ben Morgan, Chris Robshaw, Tom Wood, Geoff Parling, Courtney Lawes, Dan Cole, Tom Youngs, Joe Marler

Fiji: Metuisela Talebula, Waisea Nayacalevu, Vereniki Goneva, GabrieliLovobalavu, Nemani Nadolo, Ben Volavola, Nikola Matawalu, CampeseMa’afu, Sunia Koto Vuli, Manasa Saulo, Api Ratuniyarawa,LeoneNakarawa, Dominiko Waqaniburotu, Akapusi Qera, Sakiusa MasiMatadigo

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Toronto Blue Jays at Atlanta Braves

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The Atlanta Braves snapped a 12-game home losing streak Tuesday, and now will try to give Shelby Miller his first victory in nearly four months when they host the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday

Miller’s winless streak sits at 21 and in 13 of those outings the Braves have not scored a run while he has been in the game, but Atlanta found a way in the series opener to keep the American League East-leading Blue Jays from extending their division lead. Miller faces David Price in a matchup of two of the better pitchers in baseball this season.

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Much like the last series, this three-game set between the Atlanta Bravesand Toronto Blue Jays features two teams trending in opposite directions. Toronto took three out of four from the New York Yankees over the weekend to open up a three-game lead in the American League East. Atlanta found a way to lose Sunday to cap off a four-game sweep at the hands of the New York Mets.

Before being shutout Sunday, the Blue Jays scored 11, 9, and 10 runs against the Yankees. Against a Braves pitching staff that has struggled mightily in recent months, this does not bode well. Toronto boasts three of the top nine home run hitters in the American League in Josh Donaldson (38), Jose Bautista (35), and Edwin Encarnacion (32). Encarnacion has been especially hot as of late, hitting .341 with 11 homers and 34 RBIs in the last month. Speedy outfielder Ben Revere has been going well in recent days too, hitting .435 (10-for-23) during the past week.

The Braves, on the other hand, are in the midst of a miserable stretch. They lead theMets 7-4 with two outs in the ninth inning and the bases empty on Sunday. Three batters, later, Daniel Murphy tied the game with a three-run homer. New York scored three more runs with two outs in the tenth inning, to win 10-7. Atlanta has lost what is believed to be a franchise record 12 straight games at Turner Field. On a brighter note, Andrelton Simmons is hitting .375 (9-for-24) over the last week, and Michael Bourn has reversed some of his bad luck, batting .333 (7-for-21) over that same time.

The Blue Jays lead the Yankees by three games in the AL East and are 37-16 since the All-Star break, fueled by a high-powered offense. Toronto’s top three home-run hitters (Josh Donaldson, 38; Jose Bautista, 35; Edwin Encarnacion, 32) have combined for 105 homers, while the Braves as a team have belted just 89. Encarnacion missed his second consecutive game Tuesday with an injured middle finger on his left hand, and the Blue Jays hope he will be available at some point in the three-game series.

PITCHING MATCHUP:

Blue Jays LH David Price (6-1, 2.28 ERA) vs. Braves RH Shelby Miller (5-14, 2.86)

Price has been outstanding in eight starts since being dealt from Detroit to Toronto at the trade deadline, winning four of his last five outings. He beat the Yankees on Friday, striking out seven with two runs allowed on six hits in five innings, and has not allowed more than three earned runs in any start with the Blue Jays. Price has averaged 8.1 strikeouts in his Toronto starts, allowing only three homers in 55 1/3 innings. Miller has taken the loss in his past five outings, even though he has allowed more than four earned runs just once in that stretch. He held the Mets to three runs on seven hits in six innings last time out, but again got no support in a 7-2 defeat. The Braves have averaged 2.37 runs in Miller’s starts this season, the lowest total for any qualifying starter in the majors.

WALK-OFFS

  1. Atlanta has won just four times in its past 28 games but held the top five hitters in Toronto’s lineup to one hit in 19 at-bats with eight strikeouts in the series opener.
  2. Toronto 1B Justin Smoak started for Encarnacion and homered Tuesday, the 95th homer the Blue Jays have slugged on the road this season – second in the majors to Seattle’s 96.
  3. Blue Jays CF Ben Revere is hitless in his past eight at-bats after going 10-for-19 in his previous four games; Revere is hitting .325 in 40 games since being traded from Philadelphia to Toronto.

 

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