by Tomas Lopez
Justin Upton faces his former team for the first time on Monday when his Atlanta Braves conclude their 10-game road trip with a three-game series against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Upton, who is batting .269 with 12 home runs, arrived in Atlanta in January as part of a seven-player trade. The Braves are 2-8 in their last 10 games against the Diamondbacks, and they're stumbling into Phoenix after losing their last three games to San Francisco by a combined score of 23-4.
After sweeping Los Angeles in three games, the Diamondbacks split a four-game set against Philadelphia when they blew a two-run lead in the ninth on Sunday and lost 4-2 in 10 innings. With closer J.J. Putz (elbow) out indefinitely, Arizona has turned to veteran Heath Bell. The 35-year-old Bell suffered his second blown save on Sunday, and promising left-hander Matt Reynolds took the loss after giving up two runs in the 10th inning. If Bell continues to struggle, the team could turn to setup man David Hernandez.
Minor continued his strong start last Wednesday against the Reds, striking out seven and giving up one run over seven innings while throwing a career-high 117 pitches. The 25-year-old lefty has had excellent control, walking just eight in 45 2/3 innings. Minor won his only start against Arizona last season, allowing one earned run while striking out nine over eight innings on April 19. He’s picked up where he left off last season, when he had a 2.16 ERA in 14 starts after the All-Star break.
After walking 10 batters in his previous 9 1/3 innings, Miley threw 75 of his 102 pitches for strikes and threw 7 2/3 innings without a walk against the Dodgers last Wednesday. “I just quit thinking,” Miley told reporters. “That was pretty much it. I just kind of got caught up and was losing it out there trying to do too much and be too perfect.” In two home starts, Miley is 1-0 with 1.64 ERA with 10 walks and eight strikeouts. He’s 0-1 with a 12.71 ERA in two career games (one start) against the Braves.
1. Arizona starting pitchers have recorded quality starts in six of their last seven games.
2. Braves RF Jason Heyward (appendectomy) is expected to be activated from the disabled list at some point during the series.
3. The Diamondbacks have not committed an error in 18 of their last 21 games.
Recent Trends on Atlanta:
- Over is 11-1 in ATL last 12 road games.
- Over is 8-1 in ATL last 9 overall.
- Over is 8-1 in ATL last 9 on grass.
Recent Trends on Arizona:
- ARI are 2-9 in their last 11 Mon. games.
- Under is 9-4 in Mileys last 13 home starts.
Head to Head:
- ATL are 8-2 in the last 10 meetings.
Las Vegas Sports Betting MLB Prediction: Braves 4, Diamondbacks 2.
More Prediction at Las Vegas Sports Pick
arizona diamondbacks - atlanta braves - david hernandez - heath bell - j.j. putz - jason heyward - justin upton - matt reynolds - mike minor - wade miley