Braves: NLDS Game 1 Preview

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When the Braves and Brewers met in the regular season, they tied the season series at 3-3. This is about as even of a matchup that I can remember, and I anticipate Game 1, featuring Charlie Morton and Corbin Burnes, to foreshadow how the rest of the series will be played. .

 

The Starters

Charlie Morton:
Season:

33 Starts; 14-6

3.34 ERA

1.045 WHIP

3.72 SO/W

Postseason:

13 Games (12 Starts);

7-3 3.38 ERA

1.207 WHIP

3.05 SO/W

Corbin Burnes:
Season:

28 Starts; 11-5

2.43 ERA

1.103 WHIP

6.88 SO/W

Postseason:

6 Games (0 Starts); 1-0

2.00 ERA

.556 WHIP

6.00 SO/W

This pitching matchup reminds me of the NL Wildcard game between the Dodgers and Cardinals; an aging veteran having a great year versus a pitcher in the midst of a Cy Young caliber season. Charlie Morton has been the workhorse for Atlanta this year, starting 33 games for the Braves. The veteran right-hander has been as steady as they come after his first couple of months. At the end of May, he was sitting at an ERA of 4.26, but he turned the corner once he hit June. Since then, he has put up a sub-3.00 ERA, including a start against the Brewers on August 1st. In that game Morton pitched six innings, giving up three hits and two runs to go along with six strikeouts and no walks.

For Milwaukee, Corbin Burnes has been nothing short of dominant as he will be a finalist for the NL Cy Young this year, if not the winner. If you look at his 1.63 FIP (fielding independent pitching), he has actually been unlucky this year, which is absolutely insane considering he is already the league leader in ERA. However, in his sole start against the Braves this year, he did not look like his spectacular self. He only went four innings, giving up nine hits and five earned runs. And this was before Atlanta had Jorge Soler, Travis d’Arnaud, and Eddie Rosario, so he will be going up against a much more dangerous team than he faced before.

The Bullpens

Braves:

3.97 ERA

1.320 WHIP

.241 AVG

Brewers:

4.02 ERA

1.300 WHIP

.226 AVG

Who can get to the bullpen first will be the key to this series. There are solid pieces on each side, but as a whole, they are both middle of the pack. Luke Jackson and Tyler Matzek have been the two best relievers for Atlanta, posting a 1.98 and 2.57 ERA respectively. For Milwaukee, it has been Hunter Strickland, Devin Williams, and Josh Hader. Unfortunately for the Brewers, Devin Williams Ynoa’d a wall and will be out for most, if not all, of the postseason. However, Josh Hader is one of the absolute best closers in the game, sporting a miniscule 1.23 ERA and 34 saves. Hunter Strickland has also been great since coming over from the Angels, boasting a 1.73 ERA in 35 games for Milwaukee.

The Lineups

This is where the Braves have the biggest advantage over the Brewers. As a team, Atlanta slashed .244/.319/.435, with a .754 OPS and 239 homeruns. Milwaukee, on the other hand, went .233/.317/.396 with a .713 OPS and 194 homers. Overall, the Braves have a lot more pop in their bats than the Brewers, and if they can string some base-hits along with the long ball, this series will be over soon. I will say, where the Brew Crew exceeds over Atlanta is in stolen bases; they had 82 compared to the Braves 59, so Morton and d’Arnaud will have to watch for them on the base paths.

Braves:

(ex: Player: BA/OBP/SLG; OPS; HR; RBI; SB; Career vs Morton/Burnes)

Jorge Soler: .223/.316/.432; .749 OPS; 27 HR; 70 RBI; 0-2 K

Freddie Freeman: .300/.393/.503; .896 OPS; 31 HR; 83 RBI; 8 SB 1-3 BB K RBI

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

Austin Riley: .303/.367/.531; .898 OPS; 33 HR; 107 RBI; 1-3 HR 2RBI 2K

Adam Duvall: .228/.281/.491; .772 OPS; 38 HR; 113 RBI; 5 SB; 1-7 RBI 3K

Eddie Rosario: .259/.305/.435; .740 OPS; 14 HR; 62 RBI; 11 SB; 0-3

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

Dansby Swanson: .248/.311/.449: .760 OPS; 27 HR; 88 RBI; 9 SB; 4-5 2HR 5RBI K

Charlie Morton: .127/.127/.145; .273 OPS; 1 RBI

Bench:

Joc Pederson: .238/.310/.422; .732 OPS; 18 HR; 61 RBI; 2 SB; 4-8 2B HR 2RBI 2K

Guillermo Heredia: .220/.311/.354; .665 OPS; 5 HR; 26 RBI; 0-2

Ehire Adrianza: .247/.327/.401; .728 OPS; 5 HR; 28 RBI

William Contreras: .215/.303/.399; .701 OPS; 8 HR; 23 RBI

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

Terrance Gore: (AAA) .232/.361/.319; .680 OPS; RBI; 18 SB

Brewers:

Kolten Wong: .272/.335/.447; .783 OPS; 14 HR; 50 RBI; 12 SB; 0-4 2BB K

Willy Adames: .262/.337/.481; .818 OPS; 25 HR; 73 RBI; 5 SB; 1-9 HR RBI 4K

Eduardo Escobar: .253/.314/.472; .786 OPS; 28 HR; 90 RBI; SB; 1-9 BB 3K

Christian Yelich: .248/.362/.373; .736 OPS; 9 HR; 51 RBI; 9 SB; 6-15 3K

Avisail Garcia: .262/.330/.490; .820 OPS; 29 HR; 86 RBI; 8 SB 0-5 RBI

Lorenzo Cain: .257/.329/.401; .729 OPS; 8 HR; 36 RBI; 13 SB; 2-5 2B K

Rowdy Tellez: .272/.333/.481; .814 OPS; 7 HR; 28 RBI; 1-6 RBI 2K

Omar Narvaez: .266/.342/.402; .743 OPS; 11 HR; 49 RBI; 3-11 2B HR 4RBI 3K

Corbin Burnes: .154/.200/.154; .354 OPS; 4 RBI

Bench:

Jace Peterson: .247/.348/.367; .714 OPS; 6 HR; 31 RBI; 10 SB; 2-4 2B 3RBI

Luis Urías: .249/.345/.445; .789 OPS; 23 HR; 75 RBI; 5 SB; 1-2

Daniel Vogelbach: .219/.349/.381; .730 OPS; 9 HR; 24 RBI; 1-6 BB 2K

Manny Piña: .189/.293/.439; .732 OPS; 13 HR; 33 RBI

Tyrone Taylor: .247/.321/.457; .778 OPS; 12 HR; 43 RBI; 6 SB; 0-3 K

Luke Maile: .300/.382/.433; .816 OPS; 3 RBI

 

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