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Braves Host Nationals For Key Weekend Showdown

jordan-zimermannSo far, the Atlanta Braves have had a firm hold on the top spot in the National League’s East Division, but the Washington Nationals hope to pose a challenge this weekend. The gap between the two teams is 4.5 games, and the Nationals have lost six of their last 10 while the Braves have won eight of 10.

Still, this weekend’s three game series in Atlanta will be a great opportunity for the Nationals to send the message that this battle is far from over. They meet Friday at 7:30 pm, Saturday June 1st at 7:15 pm and Sunday at 1:35 pm.

So far this year, the Braves have relied on strong pitching to get the job done, as their team 3.43 earned runs average leaves them fifth in all of baseball. That’s helped the Braves to a 30-20 record as of May 28th, despite batting just .245, 22nd in the major leagues. The Braves are pushing more runs across than their average would dictate, with 222 runs to rank 14th in baseball.

The Nationals, meanwhile, have struggled mightily to score runs, ranking 28th in Major League Baseball with just 175 runs. The Nationals hold the same ranking with their .230 average at the plate. The saving grace in the nation’s capital has been a strong pitching staff, which has a 3.53 earned runs average, good for seventh in the league.

There could be some great pitching matchups in this series, as the Nationals have Jordan Zimmerman, with an 8-2 record and a 1.71 earned runs average. Zimmerman is backed up by Gio Gonzalez, who is 3-3 with a 3.90 earned runs average.

Depending on how the rotation lines up, the Braves could counter with Mike Minor’s 6-2 record and 2.47 earned runs average. Paul Maholm is 6-4 with a 3.38 earned runs average, as well.

Don’t miss out on your chance to see these National League East rivals go at it, as two of baseball’s best pitching staffs square off in Atlanta. With summer finally upon us, it’s time to start getting out to the ballpark and enjoying some great baseball action.

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