Eric Stults (1-1, 4.03 ERA) and Jason Marquis (2-1, 5.48 ERA) are on the hill in the third of a four-game series between the Atlanta Braves (11-12) and the Cincinnati Reds (11-12) at Turner Field. The Braves won the last game 4-3 and the series is currently tied 1-1. Action begins at 7:10 p.m. ET on Saturday, May. 2 and can be seen on FS1.
Stults is 1-1 with a 2.08 ERA in his appearances against the Reds, and goes up against a below-average Cincinnati offense which is batting just .225 this season. A.J. Pierzynski (.408, 8 Rs, 3 HRs, 14 RBIs) went 1 for 4 yesterday. Against the Braves, Marquis is 4-5 with a 6.95 ERA, 1.72 WHIP, and 31 strikeouts. Joey Votto (.329, 14 Rs, 7 HRs, 17 RBIs, 4 SBs) has been successful at the plate for the Reds, going 2 for 3 yesterday with one run and two stolen bases.
Atlanta is a slim -111 favorite at home against Cincinnati. The Over/Under (O/U) is sitting at eight runs for this matchup. The Braves have an overall money line of -36 and a record as the favorite of 3-3. Atlanta's pitching staff has been doing poorly against opposing offenses during the last 10 games, allowing an average of 5.9 runs per game, well above its season average of 4.7.
Over in the other dugout, in contrast to an encouraging overall money line (+33), Cincinnati has an unimpressive 5-8 record when playing as the underdog. Offensively, the Reds have really picked up the pace in the last 10 games. They have exceeded their season average of 4.0 runs per game by averaging 5.2 during that stretch. The Reds are an excellent base stealing team with 28 stolen bases, ranking second in the MLB.
The Braves have an 8-11 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Marquis takes the mound.
Predictions: SU Winner - CIN, O/U - Over
The Reds lost their last game by a one-run margin. In games decided by one run, the Braves are 4-6. The Reds are 5-3 in close games this season.
The Reds are 1-3 in games that go into extra innings. Meanwhile, the Braves are 0-1 in such matchups.
The Reds managed to give up six walks in their last game. They'll have to pick it up against the Braves who are heading in with a 3-1 record against opponents who give up that many walks or more.
When they outhit their opponents, the Reds are 6-4. The Braves have an 8-4 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 16th, Cincinnati sits in the bottom half of the league in runs, scoring 92 this season. Atlanta ranks in the top half at 14th with 98.
Atlanta and Cincinnati both rank in the top 10 of the league in walks. Atlanta sits at seventh with 78 this season and Cincinnati ranks 10th with 76.
The Braves are 7-6 when they hit at least one home run. The Reds perform similarly when they hit one or more homers with a 9-7 record.