August 22, 2012 at 1:20 pm by David Lee under Atlanta Braves
Braves lineup: Martin Prado (LF), Reed Johnson (CF), Jason Heyward (RF), Chipper Jones (3B), Freddie Freeman (1B), David Ross (C), Tyler Pastornicky (2B), Paul Janish (SS), Kris Medlen (P).
Nationals lineup: Jayson Werth (R, RF), Bryce Harper (L, CF), Ryan Zimmerman (R, 3B), Michael Morse (R, LF), Adam LaRoche (L, 1B), Ian Desmond (R, SS), Danny Espinosa (S, 2B), Kurt Suzuki (R, C), Ross Detwiler (B: R, T: L, P).
Game 3 vs. Nationals
It comes down to hoping to avoid a series sweep as the Braves lost 4-1 on Tuesday.
The Nationals will start Ross Detwiler in the series finale. Detwiler has a 3.25 ERA and 4.28 xFIP in 122 innings this season, using a solid 52.8% ground ball rate for his success. He won’t get a lot of strikeouts – 14.9% – but he avoids walks and home runs at a very good rate.
Also, the Braves can’t make the excuse of facing a soft-tossing lefty, as Detwiler ranges 90-94 on the fastball with sink. He’ll throw a slider to left-handed batters and a changeup to right-handed batters, but the sinking fastball is overwhelmingly his go-to pitch
Kris Medlen is riding high right now, coming off his first career complete-game shutout with no walks and six strikeouts against the Padres. However, like Paul Maholm a night ago, this will be Medlen’s first test against a contending team since joining Atlanta’s rotation.
Braves.com recap for Tuesday’s loss.
AJC quotes following Tuesday’s loss. Paul Maholm against Jesus Flores: “It wasn’t even supposed to be a strike or anywhere closer to a strike. I was just trying to throw a cutter in and go back down and away and I hung the pitch, and he obviously hit it well enough to get it out.”
Chipper Jones sat out Tuesday’s game with usual soreness. He is expected back in the lineup today.
The Braves will play the minor leaguers again March 30 next year, but this time at Mississippi’s park.
Braves prospect J.R. Graham threw six one-hit innings for Double-A Mississippi on Tuesday. Graham has a 3.41 ERA in 34.1 innings since being promoted from Single-A Advanced Lynchburg, where he had a 2.63 ERA and 68 strikeouts to 17 walks in 102.2 innings.