Live Thread – Braves At Nationals – Game 2 – 7:05 PM EST
The casual fan may hear about the duel between Julio Teheran and Stephen Strasburg, key in on all the buzz that’s surrounded Strasburg in the last few years, and then just assume the Braves will have it tough in game 2. They might, but a couple things come to mind when faced with that assumption:
1) In 2013, the Atlanta Braves achieved 19 hits and 9 runs facing Strasburg just five times. That may not seem like much, but the Braves have generally fared well against Strasburg, despite the hype. Oh, don’t get me wrong – Strasburg is a strikeout machine when he’s on his game, but the Braves will hope to take him out of his game tonight!
2) Strasburg wasn’t very ace-like in his first outing this season against the New York Mets, where he gave up 4 runs on 5 hits in just six innings of pitching. I wouldn’t count on his second start being as bumpy, but when you couple his struggles against the Mets with his history of struggles against the Braves, and Atlanta could easily go up 2-0 in the series tonight.
I predicted that David Hale would step-it-up in game 1 against Jordan Zimmermann, and the young pitcher did just that, giving up 5 hits over 5 innings yes, but allowing ZERO runs. Hale only struck out 4 while walking 2, but he got the job done inducing grounders at just over 46%.
Julio Teheran is a bit more seasoned as a big league starter than Hale, but similar questions face Teheran. Can Julio step-it-up like Hale, and deliver a good outing against someone who at least on paper is a much better pitcher? I think so!
Teheran gave up 7 hits over 6 innings in his first outing this season, but was able to limit the damage to just 2 runs. Even though the Braves lost that game, Teheran pitched well and showed signs of the kind of command I expect from him this season. It will be interesting to see how he fares tonight facing one of the toughest pitchers in the NL, and interesting to see how well the Braves will fare against such a good strike-throwing pitcher, particularly in light of the disappointing numbers of strikeouts the Braves have put up.
Get Caught Up, Then Join Us Live
Before tonight’s game and Live Thread, take a look at our own Brandon Woodworth’s Braves Vs. Nationals Series Preview for more particulars, and then at game time join us for our Live Thread below and join the conversation! We’ll be talking about things in the game, things out of the game, and we always welcome your thoughts and comments. Come help us root on our beloved Braves to get the win and take the series as they face their divisional nemesis for game 2 of the 3 game set.