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6/13 Game Preview: Braves start four-game series vs. Reds in Atlanta

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Battle of the basement-dwellers, part deux!

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Braves limp away from a thrashing at the hands of the Cubs and (hopefully) get a reprieve as they start a four-game series against the visiting Reds tonight.

Taking the ball for the Braves will be Aaron Blair, who is still looking for his first major-league win against a Reds team that, despite sitting in the basement of the NL Central, has won seven of 11 in June. The Reds counter with rookie right-hander Daniel Wright, who has all of 10 major-league innings under him. We don't know much about him, but Minor League Ball has us covered:

Wright pitched college ball for four seasons at Arkansas State University. He was quite solid as a senior in 2013, posting a 3.18 ERA in 110 innings with a 96/26 K/BB, but as a right-hander who didn't throw particularly hard his stock wasn't overly high on draft day. He was picked in the 10th round but moved through the system quickly, reaching Double-A in 2015 with a 4.54 ERA in 27 starts for Pensacola, with a 130/47 K/BB in 155 innings.

This year he has four starts and six relief appearances for Triple-A Louisville, with an excellent 0.79 ERA and a scalpel 32/5 K/BB in 34 innings, allowing only 17 hits.

Listed at 6-2, 205, Wright uses a four-seam fastball generally at 88-89 MPH with peaks at 91. He will mix in a change-up in the upper-70s/low-80s and a curveball in the 70s; there's a low-80s version of the breaking ball as well but he doesn't use it as much as the softer stuff. His lack of hot fastball velocity gives him a small margin for error but this wasn't a big problem against minor league hitters due to his sharp control.

The Reds offense has recovered somewhat after a miserable May during which they won just eight games the entire month, and suffered through an 11-game losing streak. So far in June, the Reds are hitting .282, although they've scored just seven runs in their last four games.

They'll be without Billy Hamilton, who is on the 7-day concussion list after a throw hit him in the head while sliding into third base on Wednesday, although he could be out longer.

Joey Votto is having an un-Votto-like year, hitting just .232. However, he was hitting as low as .203 on May 23 and so far in June is slashing .316/.458/.579. He has 11 home runs this year, which is fourth on the team. Adam Duvall leads the Reds with 17 homers; Jay Bruce follows with 14. Brandon Phillips is hitting .293 for June and .263 overall.

As far as pitching, they have the worst staff ERA in the NL and only nine saves as a team; Tony Cingrani serves as the closer with six of the nine.

BULLPEN
L - Tony Cingrani
R - A.J. Morris
R - Ross Ohlendorf
R - JC Ramirez
R - Josh Smith
R - Blake Wood

Game Info

Date/Time: Monday, June 13, 2016, 7:10 p.m. ET
Location: Turner Field - Atlanta, GA
TV: Fox Sports Southeast
Radio: 680 AM/93.7 FM, WYAY 106.7, Braves Radio Network