Washington Nationals at Braves Series Preview (8/18-8/21)
By Ricky Keeler
After taking two of three games from the Braves at home last week, the Washington Nationals begin a four game series in Atlanta tonight
At Coors Field this week, the Washington Nationals (70-49) didn’t get more than four innings out of any of their starting pitchers as they lost two out of three games to the Colorado Rockies. ‘That being said, the offense scored 17 runs and hit five home runs.
During the series, Bryce Harper had a home run and four RBI’s in the three games and Jayson Werth comes into tonight with a 45-game on-base streak. Tonight, the Nats are at Turner Field as they begin a four-game series against the Atlanta Braves (44-76). Last weekend, the Nats took two out of three against the Braves at Nationals Park.
Against the Nats last weekend, Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman went 5-for-9 in the three games with two home runs and five RBI’s. Since the All-Star Break, Freeman is hitting .295 with eight home runs and 22 RBI’s and he’s hitting .327 since August 1.
Two other players to watch on the Braves offense are right fielder Nick Markakis and center fielder Ender Inciarte. Markakis is hitting .304 with three home runs and 12 RBI’s this month while Inciarte is hitting .359 with 13 runs scored in his last 15 games.
Since last weekend, the Braves played two home games against the Minnesota Twins and lost both of those games by a combined score of 13-5. Last night, Atlanta called up top prospect Dansby Swanson to be their shortstop after they traded Erick Aybar to the Tigers. Swanson went 2-for-4 in last night’s loss.
On the mound, the Braves have a 4.87 team ERA (seventh in the National League) and they are going to get Julio Teheran back in their rotation on Friday. In the bullpen, they activated Arodys Vizcaino (10-for-13 in saves), who has not pitched since July 15 because of an oblique injury.
Before this series starts tonight, check out my breakdown of the four pitching matchups this series:
Next: Tonight's Matchup