Braves: NLCS Game 4 Preview

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After an unfortunate 6-5 loss to the Dodgers, the series sits at 2-1 in the Braves favor. The Braves led 5-2 going into the bottom of the 8th, but a three-run home run from Cody Bellinger and an RBI double from Mookie Betts led to a come from behind victory. It’s the kind of win that can completely shift a series, but hopefully, the Braves have a short-term memory. If not, this could become a best-of-three series very quickly. The Dodgers will have the league leader in wins, Julio Urías, starting Game 4 of the NLCS while the Braves will roll with a bullpen game, beginning with Huascar Ynoa.

The Starters

The Opener:
Season:

18 Games (17 Starts); 4-6

4.05 ERA

1.110 WHIP

Postseason:

1 Game (1 Inning)

18.00 ERA

3.00 WHIP

Julio Urías:
Season:

32 Starts; 20-3

2.96 ERA

1.018 WHIP

Postseason:

21 Games (4 Starts); 7-2

2.96 ERA

0.884 WHIP

With all three members of the Braves starting rotation having pitched the first three games, Atlanta is without a traditional starting pitcher for Game 4. Huascar Ynoa will begin the game on the mound. He looked fantastic to begin the season but ended it poorly and that continued into the NLDS, where he gave up two runs in just one inning of work out of the bullpen.

The Dodgers will go with the winningest pitcher in baseball. Every time Urias pitched, he gave his team a chance to win. Yes, I know wins are oftentimes a meaningless statistic for pitchers, but Urias was electric, boasting a 2.96 ERA for the season. He faced Atlanta twice, going five innings with one run on four hits and two walks, and six innings with two runs on four hits.

For the postseason, Urias has mostly been used as a reliever, and a pretty good one at that. His ERA in the playoffs is the exact same as it was during the regular season. However, during this year’s postseason, he hasn’t been as reliable. He started one game, going five innings and giving up a run on three hits. Urias also has two relief appearances, totaling five innings where he surrendered three runs on six hits. Urias gave up two of those runs on three hits in an inning of work in Game 2 of the NLCS, which put the Braves in position to win. Hopefully, that is the Julio Urías that shows up to Dodger Stadium tonight.

The Bullpens

Braves:
Regular Season:

3.97 ERA

1.320 WHIP

.241 AVG

Postseason:

2.70 ERA

1.350 WHIP

.221 AVG

Dodgers:
Regular Season:

3.16 ERA

1.190 WHIP

.205 AVG

Postseason:

2.14 ERA

0.880 WHIP

.200 AVG

Unfortunately, the floodgates opened for the Dodgers hitters last night. Luke Jackson, who has pitched in every postseason game, mind you, gave up four runs on four hits in 1/3 inning of work. Cody Bellinger was terrible in the regular season but has seemed to find his 2019 MVP self in the postseason as he launched a three-run home run to tie the game.

The pitch that was hit for a home run was a 97 MPH fastball that was three inches above the zone. However, Bellinger was looking fastball and that’s exactly what he got. Don’t be surprised if Snitker gives Jackson the chance to go back out there tonight to try and redeem himself. Or Jackson could get a much-needed day of rest like I have inaccurately predicted all postseason. The rest of the bullpen was great, covering three innings with no runs allowed. All hands will be on deck as they will have to cover a lot more after the opener leaves the game.

For the Dodgers, their bullpen was just better last night. Corey Knebel was the only one to give up a run, but the others shutout the Braves over 5.1 innings of work. Dave Roberts has had a short leash for his starters, so don’t be shocked if he yanks Urías after four innings so he can hand the reigns over to his ‘pen.

The Lineups

Braves:

Dansby Swanson: .248/.311/.449: .760 OPS; 27 HR; 88 RBI; 9 SB; 0-3 BB

Freddie Freeman: .300/.393/.503; .896 OPS; 31 HR; 83 RBI; 8 SB; 2-8 2HR 2RBI 3K

Ozzie Albies: .259/.310/.488; .799 OPS; 30 HR; 106 RBI; 20 SB; 1-4 2BB K

Austin Riley: .303/.367/.531; .898 OPS; 33 HR; 107 RBI; 1-5 2K

Eddie Rosario: .259/.305/.435; .740 OPS; 14 HR; 62 RBI; 11 SB; 0-2

Adam Duvall: .228/.281/.491; .772 OPS; 38 HR; 113 RBI; 5 SB; 1-5

Joc Pederson: .238/.310/.422; .732 OPS; 18 HR; 61 RBI; 2 SB

Travis d’Arnaud: .220/.284/.388; .671 OPS; 7 HR; 26 RBI; 0-2 K

 

Bench:

Cristian Pache: .111/.152/.206; .358 OPS; 1 HR; 4 RBI

Guillermo Heredia: .220/.311/.354; .665 OPS; 5 HR; 26 RBI; 0-3 K

Ehire Adrianza: .247/.327/.401; .728 OPS; 5 HR; 28 RBI; 1-3 K

William Contreras: .215/.303/.399; .701 OPS; 8 HR; 23 RBI; 1-2 K

Orlando Arcia: .198/.258/.309; .567 OPS; 2 HR; 14 RBI; SB; 1-4 K

Johan Camargo: (AAA) .326/.401/.557; .958 OPS; 19 HR; 67 RBI

Dodgers:

Mookie Betts: .264/.367/.487; .854 OPS; 23 HR; 58 RBI; 10 SB

Corey Seager: .306/.394/.521; .915 OPS; 16 HR; 57 RBI; 1 SB

Trea Turner: .328/.375/.536; .911 OPS; 28 HR; 77 RBI; 32 SB

Will Smith: .258/.365/.495; .860 OPS; 25 HR; 76 RBI; 3 SB

Justin Turner: .278/.361/.471; .832 OPS; 27 HR; 87 RBI; 3 SB

Gavin Lux: .242/.328/.364; .692 OPS; 7 HR; 46 HR; 4 SB

Cody Bellinger: .165/.240/.302; .542 OPS; 10 HR; 36 RBI; 3 SB

Chris Taylor: .254/.344/.438; .782 OPS; 20 HR; 73 RBI; 13 SB

Julio Urías: .203/.217/.237; .454 OPS; 9 RBI

Bench:

A.J. Pollock: .297/.355/.536; .892 OPS; 21 HR; 69 RBI; 9 SB; 0-11 RBI BB 2K

Austin Barnes: .215/.299/.345; .644 OPS; 6 HR; 23 RBI; 1 SB; 0-2 K

Albert Pujols: .236/.284/.433; .717 OPS; 17 HR; 50 RBI; 2 SB; 8-33 3 2B 5 RBI 5BB 2K 2SB

Steven Souza Jr.: .152/.222/.333; .556 OPS; 1 HR; 3 RBI; 2-9 2B 2K

Matt Beaty: .270/.363/.402; .765 OPS; 7 HR; 40 RBI; 2 SB; 1-2 RBI

 

The Braves switched things up a bit with a lefty on the mound. Dansby Swanson moves to leadoff, Eddie Rosario drops to the middle of the order, and Joc Pederson, who was hitting fifth, is now seventh.

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