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Marlins Vs. Braves: Little Relief For The Braves In Rubber Game Matchup

The Braves and Marlins face off in the rubber game of the three-game series beginning at 7:10 on Fox Sports South/Peachtree TV.

Marlins Lineup:

1. Chris Coghlan, CF

2. Omar Infante, 2B

3. Hanley Ramirez, SS

4. Mike Stanton, RF

5. Logan Morrison, LF

6. Gaby Sanchez, 1B

7. Greg Dobbs, 3B

8. John Buck, C

9. Ricky Nolasco, SP

Braves Lineup:

1. Martin Prado, LF

2. Nate McLouth, CF

3. Chipper Jones, 3B

4. Brian McCann, C

5. Dan Uggla, 2B

6. Jason Heyward, RF

7. Alex Gonzalez, SS

8. Freddie Freeman, 1B

9. Brandon Beachy, SP

Ricky Nolasco (2011: 15 IP, 2.40 ERA, 3.96 FIP, 3.60 xFIP, 0 BB/9, 3.60 K/9, 38.8 GB%, 9 SwStr%)
(53 FB%, 23 SL%, 12.5 SF%, 11.5 CB%; 57 Swing%, 84.2 Contact%)
vs.
Brandon Beachy (2011: 12 IP, 3.75 ERA, 4.69 FIP, 4.14 xFIP, 2.25 BB/9, 6.75 K/9, 29.4 GB%, 10.1 SwStr%)
(56.7 FB%, 15.9 CB%, 14 SL%, 13.4 CH%; 46 Swing%, 77 Contact%)

Ricky Nolasco had a solid 2010 season cut short due to a knee injury, but he has picked up where he left off with two good starts so far this year. He has allowed two runs in each start against the Mets and Astros, going seven and eight innings, respectively. Nolasco posted the best K/BB of his career last year at 4.45, and while he only has six strikeouts in 15 innings so far this season, he hasn't walked a batter. He has always had solid control and this year seems to be no different. Look for a main combination of fastballs and sliders with a few splitters and curves mixed in.

Chalk up Brandon Beachy's previous start to facing the Phillies. He allowed four runs on seven hits in six innings. Beachy is throwing a large amount of breaking and offspeed stuff early, and while it resulted in seven strikeouts against the Brewers, it only gave him two strikeouts against the Phillies. Beachy will hit his bumps but he will be fine.

Opposing Numbers:

The two big bats in the middle of the Braves order are looking forward to seeing Ricky Nolasco. Chipper Jones has a .464 mark with four homers against him, while Brian McCann is a .361 mark with five homers. After that, there isn't much to look at. Nate McLouth and Martin Prado have had experience against Nolasco, but neither has a batting average above .280. Jason Heyward is 2-4 with a triple and walk.

Greg Dobbs is the lone Marlin who has experience against Brandon Beachy due to his days last year as a Phillies utility player. Dobbs is 0-3 with three strikeouts against him.

What to Look For:

After getting shut down by Josh Johnson last night, the Braves aren't getting much relief in Nolasco. The career numbers could play into this one as Chipper and McCann have done considerable damage against him.

For more on the series, Braves fans check out Talking Chop and Marlins fans check out Fish Stripes.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.