The Braves are using a standard lineup once again after Matt Joyce’s impressive feats as a starter on Sunday afternoon. The Pirates, meanwhile, have a bit of a different look given the return of Jung-Ho Kang, though Corey Dickerson isn’t drawing the start in tonight’s contest.
This is going to be the tenth time the Braves have deployed this particular lineup — it’s their most commonly-used one so far this season. The next-closest lineup has only been used six times. And yes, this is the same lineup the Braves deployed in their 7-4 defeat in Round 1 of this pitching matchup.
The Pirates have yet to use either this defensive arrangement or this lineup this season. Colin Moran will be making just his fourth-ever start at second base to fit Kang into the lineup. For the Pirates, their first six hitters are the same as in Round 1, but Kang is hitting seventh while Adam Frazier takes a bench role for this game, and Elias Diaz drops to eighth.
With both of these starters making a second consecutive start against their respective opponents, everyone should be somewhat familiar with the matchups at this point. Ronald Acuña Jr. and Dansby Swanson tallied ninth-inning homers off Joe Musgrove last week, while Freddie Freeman had one from a prior meeting. Meanwhile, Diaz and Moran teed off for longballs off Gausman last week, while Polanco has one from a prior outing. On the Braves, only Charlie Culberson has never faced Musgrove before; on the Pirates, Kang will be seeing Gausman for the first time, along with backups Jose Osuna and Jacob Stallings, should they make it into the game against Atlanta’s starter.
Game time is 7:20 pm EDT.