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Game Thread 6/12: Braves vs. Cubs

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The Braves have an opportunity to take a series from the best team in baseball, but it'll be a pretty tough task for them to do it.

Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

It's time for some good ol' Sunday afternoon baseball, and the obvious good news today is the fact that the Braves will be going into a series finale against baseball's best team without dealing with the specter of avoiding a series sweep. Instead, they actually have a shot at possibly taking a series against the Cubs. A series victory won't matter too much in the long run, but it's always fun to let the top teams know that they aren't invincible, right?

Today will be John Gant's first career start, and it's safe to say that he's going to have a major challenge on his hands this afternoon. Meanwhile, Erick Aybar has been activated from the DL and will be returning to the lineup today as well. The Braves lineup will have to deal with a currently on-fire Jon Lester, so they'll also have a major challenge today. It's a rough matchup on paper, but you don't play games on paper, so there's still some hope that the Braves can tip the apple cart here and pull off an upset. We'll see what happens.

Here are the lineups:

Today's Lineups

CHICAGO CUBS ATLANTA BRAVES
Dexter Fowler - CF Ender Inciarte - CF
Jason Heyward - RF Chase d'Arnaud - 2B
Kris Bryant - 3B Freddie Freeman - 1B
Anthony Rizzo - 1B Jeff Francoeur - LF
Ben Zobrist - 2B Nick Markakis - RF
Chris Coghlan - LF Adonis Garcia - 3B
Javier Baez - SS Tyler Flowers - C
David Ross - C Erick Aybar - SS
Jon Lester - LHP John Gant - RHP

And here's some data on Lester:

Trajectory and Movement - from 01/01/2016 to 01/01/2017

Pitch Type Count Freq Velo (mph) pfx HMov (in.) pfx VMov (in.) H. Rel (ft.) V. Rel (ft.)
Fourseam 605 48.28% 93.19 5.87 10.16 2.84 5.75
Sinker 119 9.50% 91.86 9.30 5.00 2.86 5.68
Change 67 5.35% 86.25 9.89 5.35 2.84 5.78
Curve 160 12.77% 76.05 -5.35 -3.00 2.81 5.82
Cutter 301 24.02% 89.48 0.21 5.75 2.85 5.74