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It’s hard to choose between a team that’s white-hot and one that’s even whiter hot, but that’s what’s happening with the Braves and Yankees. Both teams are playing their best baseball at the perfect time, but in this one Atlanta seems to have the edge.
Not only are they at home (although the Braves are better on the road) but Charlie Morton is without question the more reliable starter.
Garcia’s 2021 record: (48-45-2)
Odds presented by: DraftKings Sportsbook
|Team||Run Spread||Money Line||Total|
|New York Yankees||+1.5 (-150)||+130||O 9.5 (-105)|
|Atlanta Braves||-1.5 (+130)||-150||U 9.5 (-115)|
|New York Yankees vs Atlanta Braves Information|
|Teams||New York Yankees vs Atlanta Braves|
|Location||Truist Park, Atlanta, GA|
|Time||Tuesday, August 24, 7:10 p.m. EST|
|How to watch||Bally Sports South, YES Network, MLB.TV|
Both teams were lost for dead in the middle of July. Or so their fan bases would have told you.
The sky was falling for two teams that entered the season with World Series expectations, but for some reason or another — may it be an injury, Covid, bad luck or underperforming — both were pointed in the direction of missing the playoffs.
Then the calendar turned to August (or right around that time) and it’s been an entirely different world for both of these squads.
New York is 17-4 this month and 26-9 in the second half overall. The Braves, meanwhile, came in 16-3 in August and now hold a five-game lead over the Phillies in the NL East — keep in mind they were below .500 on August 3rd.
On Monday, the teams met in Game 1 of the series and each came in with a 9+ game win streak before the Yankees finished the job 5-1. It was the first time in 120 years that two teams met while on winning streaks of 9+ games.
That said, things are getting harder for Atlanta. The Braves swept their last nine games against sub-.500 teams. Their next eight are against the Yankees, Giants and Dodgers, so it’s time to see how real this second half surge is.
During this winning streak of 9+ games for both sides, they’ve enjoyed some impressive hitting streaks from their respective first basemen.
Freddie Freeman is hitting .421 with a .789 slugging percentage and seven extra-base hits during this winning streak for Atlanta while Luke Voit has finally turned a corner after a brutal first half of the season.
Since coming off the IL two weeks ago, Voit is hitting .320 and over the last week he’s hitting .476 (10-of-21) with two home runs, a team-high 11 RBIs and an insane 1.427 OPS.
The pitching matchup is interesting as well, with veteran Charlie Morton facing Andrew Heaney who’s been up and down for New York.
With Morton, you kind of know what you’re going to get — a consistent, solid outing. The 37-year-old is 12-4 on the year with a 3.47 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 164 strikeouts in 140 innings. Morton has 12 quality starts in his last 17 outings and has gone six or more innings in 10 of his past 12 starts.
Heaney has struggled much of the season — 8-8 record, 5.51 ERA and 1.26 WHIP — but does come off his best outing of the year. He picked up a win against the Red Sox last week, throwing seven innings of one run ball, giving up a season-low two hits.
A big key in this game is which Heaney shows up
It has to be Giancarlo Stanton for the Yankees after the night he had yesterday. Stanton went 2-for-3 with a home run, double and three RBIs in the win. He’s now scored a run in a season-high six straight games.
For Atlanta, we’re going to watch Adam Duvall to see if he can pick things up. The slugger is hitting just .182 the past week (4-of-22) before this series, but did reach base two times last night, so maybe that will get the slugger going again.
Overall, nobody is worried about the big man, who has 27 home runs and 86 RBIs this year.
Tony writes about baseball for WSN.com after recently graduating with his Masters from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Prior to that, Tony was a local sports reporter for MLive Media Group, based out of Jackson, Michigan where he covered everything from high school to professional sports. He graduated from Michigan State in 2015 with a degree in journalism. During his time there he covered the Michigan State football and men’s basketball teams from 2013-15 and hosted a sports radio show on WDBM 89FM.More info on Tony Garcia
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