Saturday, April 11, 2015

Ace aims to extend Braves' strong start vs. Mets

The festivities of their home opener come and gone, the Braves will return to Turner Field on Saturday for another National League East clash against the Mets. This one features Atlanta's ace, Julio Teheran, against New York's fifth starter, Dillon Gee. But Gee has had plenty of success against the Braves over the years, with a 2.79 ERA in 14 starts, making the pitching matchup more even than it might seem on paper.
Things to know about this game:
1. With trade rumors swirling throughout the offseason and Spring Training, Gee waited until the final days of camp to rent an apartment in New York. He snagged one about 10 days ago, finally convinced that he was going to be a member of the Mets. For now, at least, Zack Wheeler's elbow injury means Gee will serve in the rotation, bringing his 6-4 career record against the Braves into Saturday's start.
2. Teheran has allowed two earned runs or fewer in five of his past six starts against the Mets. Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke and Adam Wainwright are the only NL pitchers who have produced a better ERA than Teheran (2.84) while making at least 50 starts since the start of the 2013 season.
3. Keep an eye on both shortstops. While two-time Gold Glove Award winner Andrelton Simmons starred in Friday night's game, making a spectacular play on defense and doubling on offense, Wilmer Flores struggled with two errors. If those trends continue, shortstop play could become a key to the series.

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