National League Preview from The Sports Network
Monday, September 1 (All times Eastern)
Philadelphia Phillies (62-74) at Atlanta Braves (72-65), 1:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Philadelphia - Cole Hamels (7-6, 2.59) Atlanta - Julio Teheran (13-9, 2.90)
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Atlanta Braves will try to stay in the hunt for a playoff spot when they open a three-game series with the Philadelphia Phillies Monday afternoon at Turner Field.
The Braves are 1 1/2 games off a wild card spot in the National League and still have hopes for an NL East title, as they sit six games behind the Washington Nationals.
Atlanta disposed of another division foe this weekend and won two of three matchups with the Miami Marlins, including Sunday's 1-0 victory in the rubber match. Alex Wood continued his recent surge on the mound with eight shutout innings and 12 strikeouts. Wood allowed five hits before closer Craig Kimbrel closed the door on the Marlins in the ninth for his MLB-best 41st save.
"He had all the stuff today. He was locating it well," Braves center fielder B.J. Upton said of Wood. "He had every pitch in his arsenal. When he's got that going, he's tough."
Evan Gattis provided the scoring with a leadoff homer in the second inning.
Atlanta has won four of its last five and is 5-1 in the past six at home.
Julio Teheran has won his last three starts and sports a 1.47 earned run average in that time. The Braves hope he can make it four straight wins when he takes the mound Monday against the Phillies.
Teheran's winning streak arrives on the heels of a personal three-game slide and the right-hander previously toed the rubber in a 3-2 win over the New York Mets last Wednesday, as he held them to a run and three hits in 6 1/3 innings.
"Every time I go out there it is an important game for me and my team," Teheran said. "All I try to do is do my best and I know my teammates are going to do their part."
Teheran has given up just three runs over his last three starts. He is 13-9 overall with a 2.90 ERA and 5-2 in 13 home starts. Teheran has a 2-0 mark in three starts against the Phillies in 2014 and is 3-2 with a 2.95 ERA in seven career games (6 starts) in this series.
Meanwhile, the Phillies lost two of three games against the New York Mets at Citi Field to begin a nine-game road trip and entered the weekend set with four straight wins.
In Sunday's 6-5 loss, Ryan Howard and Domonic Brown both homered and Brown finished with four hits. Jimmy Rollins posted three hits and scored twice, while Phillies starting pitcher A.J. Burnett fell to 7-15 after he gave up five runs and nine hits in six innings.
"It's been a grind," said Howard. "This entire year has been a grind. I'm just going out there to do what I can, try and help my team."
The Phillies will also visit Washington on this trip and have lost eight of their past 10 road games.
Philadelphia has won three straight and six of Cole Hamels' last eight starts, with the left-hander going 4-1 with a 1.93 ERA in that time. The 2008 World Series MVP gets the nod Monday in Atlanta and took the mound in last Tuesday's 4-3 win over Washington.
Hamels did not figure into the decision against the Nationals and held them to three runs in seven innings before manager Ryne Sandberg pulled the hook on the southpaw. Hamels was clearly frustrated of leaving the game and didn't even look at Sandberg when he handed him the ball.
He wouldn't address the issue when asked if he was upset.
"It was a good game that we won," said Hamels, who is 7-6 on the season to go along with a 2.59 ERA in 24 starts.
Hamels is 1-0 in two starts against the Braves this season and 15-8 with a 3.34 ERA in 33 lifetime matchups (32 starts) with them.
Atlanta is 8-5 against Philadelphia this season.
09/01 10:33:20 ET