When the Braves square off with the Mets beginning Friday night, they will be looking to get back at their division rivals after watching the Mets take 4 of 6 games in July, while Dan Uggla and Freddie Freeman will both be looking to extend their hitting streaks.
In the opener, Tim Hudson (10-7, 3.31 ERA) takes the mound opposite R.A. Dickey (5-9, 3.77 ERA), as Hudson is looking to continue his strong showings of late.
In his last five starts, Hudson has gone at least 7 innings, but the Braves have won just three of those starts, not giving the veteran much run support in the two losses.
Against Florida July 30, Hudson allowed 1 run on 6 hits while striking out 5 in a 5-1 Braves win. He last saw the Mets June 15, as he lasted just 4 innings, giving up 3 runs on 4 hits in a 4-0 Mets win. The previous outing against the Mets, Hudson went just 4 innings in that start as well, giving up 5 runs on 7 hits in a 6-4 Braves loss.
Dickey will be seeing the Braves for the third time this year after seeing them twice in June. The last time he saw this lineup, he lasted 4 innings while giving up 6 runs on 6 hits through 4 innings in a 9-8 Braves win. On June 5, Dickey went 8 innings, giving up just one run on 4 hits in a Mets 4-1 win. In his July 30 outing, Dickey gave up 3 runs on 6 hits through 6 innings in a 3-0 Washington win.
In Saturday’s contest, Tommy Hanson (11-6, 3.20 ERA) toes the mound for the Braves, while Jonathon Niese (10-8, 3.94 ERA) gets the start for the Mets.
Hanson will be looking to bounce back against the Mets after slipping over his last four starts.
He lasted 6 innings July 31 against the Marlins, giving up 3 runs on 6 hits over 6 innings in a Braves 3-1 loss. Atlanta has split his last four starts, as he has not gone over 6 innings since the All-Star break. Hanson has seen the Mets once this year, April 17. In that start, he went 5 innings and gave up 3 runs on 5 hits in a 3-2 Braves win.
Niese will be making his third start against the Braves this season. In his June 14 outing, he lasted 6 1/3 innings, giving up 2 runs on 5 hits in a 4-3 Mets win. On June 3, he went 7 2/3 innings, giving up 2 runs on 8 hits in a 6-3 Braves win. In his July 31 start, Niese lasted 5 1/3 innings, giving up 2 runs on 8 hits in a Washington 3-2 win.
In Sunday’s finale, Jair Jurrjens (12-4, 2.63 ERA) will be looking to get back to his first half ways as he opposes Dillon Gee (10-3, 3.69).
After watching the Braves win 7 of his last 8 starts, he was unable to weather the storm against the Nationals August 1, giving up 5 runs on 7 hits over 5 innings in a 5-3 Washington win. Jurrjens has seen the Mets twice this season, most recently June 14. In that outing, he gave up 4 runs on 6 hits over 6 1/3 innings in a 5-0 Mets win. He also saw the Mets his first outing of the year, throwing 7 innings of two-hit, shutout baseball in a 4-0 Braves win.
Gee will be seeing the Braves for the fourth time this year. In his most recent outing against the Braves June 15, he threw 4 innings before rain shortened his day, giving up just 1 hit before the Braves took the game, 4-0. The previous outing June 4, he threw 7 innings of four-hit, shutout baseball in a 5-0 Mets win. He also saw the Braves his first start of the year, going 5 2/3 innings while allowing just one run on 5 hits in a 3-2 Mets win. On July 29, Gee went 6 2/3 innings against the Nationals, giving up 3 runs on 4 hits in a 8-5 Mets win.
Offensively, Uggla is looking to extend his hitting streak to 26, while Freeman will be looking to remain on his heels, as he goes for 19 straight. But Uggla has struggled against Dickey, going 0-for-15 in his career against the Mets starter, including 0-for-5 this season. Freeman has one hit in 5 plate appearances against Dickey. Look for Michael Bourn and Martin Prado to set the table for the Braves 3-4-5 hitters all series long.
With the departure of Carlos Beltran to the Giants, the Braves still must slow Jose Reyes, while making sure they do not over look the rest of their lineup, including Jason Bay, David Wright, Lucas Duda and Daniel Murphy.
So far this season, the Mets hold the advantage, winning 5 of the 9 games the two rivals have played so far.