With rain forcing an unscheduled “break” for the Atlanta Braves on Thursday evening, the team will return to action on Friday night in a different venue. Brian Snitker and company are riding the wave of a three-game winning streak (over the Dodgers and Marlins) but, this time, it is the New York Mets standing in the way at Citi Field.
Mike Foltynewicz takes the ball for Atlanta in the series opener and, to put it plainly, the 26-year-old has been the team’s best starting pitcher this season. The powerful right-hander owns a 3.04 ERA in 20 starts and more than 110 innings, with Foltynewicz striking out more than 10 batters per 9 innings over the course of the campaign.
In the recent past, though, Foltynewicz has not been as effective, allowing at least four earned runs in four consecutive outings. In many ways, the Mets offense could be the cure for what ills him and, back on June 12, Foltynewicz navigated five innings of scoreless baseball against New York.
In opposition, the Mets will send left-hander Jason Vargas to the hill and that is probably good news for the road team. In starts, the veteran has only eaten 42 innings and the biggest reason why is an unsightly 8.36 ERA (!) on the year. Of course, the Braves do have a checkered history against unimpressive opposing pitchers but, on paper, this is a favorable match-up for Atlanta.
As a result, Las Vegas installs the Braves as solid favorites (in the -155 range) even on the road and that is usually a good sign. Of course, baseball is still played on the diamond itself and that means you must stay tuned throughout the day and evening for all the latest in this space.
Time/Date: Thursday, August 2, 7:10 pm ET
Location: Citi Field
TV: Fox Sports Southeast (Streaming: Fox Sports Go)
Radio: 680 AM/93.7 FM, 106.7 FM Braves Radio Network