Series preview: vs. Cubs
When (TV): 7:35 p.m. Friday (FSSO), 7:10 p.m. Saturday (FSSO), 1:35 p.m. Sunday (FSSO)
Radio: 680, 93.7, 100.5
Probable starting pitchers:
Friday: Braves LH Mike Minor (11-10, 4.12 ERA in 2012) vs. RH Scott Feldman (6-11, 5.09)
Saturday: Braves RH Julio Teheran (0-0, 5.68) vs. RH Carlos Villanueva (7-7, 4.16)
Sunday: Braves RH Tim Hudson (0-0, 6.23) vs. RH Jeff Samardzija (1-0, 0.00)
About the Braves:
Batting: Freddie Freeman was 5-for-7 with a homer and a National League-leading six RBIs in two games before Thursday, after hitting .342 with a team-high seven homers in 76 at-bats during spring training. … Justin Upton homered in each of his first two games for the Braves before Thursday, after hitting .286 with six homers with a Grapefruit League-leading 19 RBIs in spring training.
Pitching: Minor went 7-4 with a 2.21 ERA and .193 opponents’ average in his last 15 starts in 2012, after going 4-6 with a 6.20 ERA and .271 OA in his first 15. He’s 4-0 with a 4.30 ERA in four starts against the Cubs, with 30 strikeouts and four walks in 23 innings. He struck out 12 in six innings of an August 2012 start against them as a rookie. … Hudson is 2-1 with a 3.44 ERA in six starts against the Cubs, and Teheran has not faced them.
Miscellaneous: Jason Heyward has hit .297 with seven homers, 18 RBIs and a .672 slugging percentage in 18 career games against the Cubs. … Chris Johnson has hit .374 (34-for-105) with nine extra-base hits in 29 games against the Cubs. He faced them frequently as a member of the Astros before being traded to Arizona last summer. … The only Braves who’ve faced Feldman are Justin Upton (2-for-5), B.J. Upton (1-for-11) and Gerald Laird (0-for-4).
About the Cubs:
Batting: LF Alfonso Soriano has a .313 career average with 18 homers, 41 RBIs and a .648 slugging percentage in 56 games against the Braves, including eight homers and 18 RBIs in 28 games at Turner Field. He’s 2-for-10 with a homer against Minor. Soriano is 1-for-12 with six strikeouts in three games this season. … RF Nate Schierholtz hit a two-run homer in Thursday’s 3-2 win against Pittsburgh.
Pitching: Feldman was 5-11 with a 5.48 ERA in 21 starts last season and had a 1.98 ERA in eight relief appearances. His only game against the Braves was a start in 2008 (no decision, seven innings, five hits, two runs). … Villanueva is 1-2 with a 7.20 ERA in 10 games (one start) against the Braves, with four homers allowed in 15 innings. … Samardzija is 2-0 with a 2.66 ERA in eight games (two starts) against the Braves and has 22 strikeouts in 20 1/3 innings.
Miscellaneous: Closer Carlos Marmol got a save Thursday, but it was ugly. He gave up three hits and two runs in the ninth inning of a 3-2 win against the Pirates. In his only other appearance this season, he allowed one run, one hit and one walk while recording one out. Marmol has a 20.25 ERA.