Kevin Gausman and the Braves oppose Patrick Corbin and the Diamondbacks on Friday night, trying for their second win in Phoenix to start the weekend.
Here’s what to know before the game:
1. The Braves’ 40-29 road record is the best in the National League. They have 12 road contests remaining, and one more win secures them their first non-losing road campaign since 2012.
During the rebuilding years, from 2013-17, the Braves accrued a 174-230 road record, seventh-worst in the bigs. They were 29-64 in NL West cities, but own a 5-5 mark entering Friday’s game.
2. Much is made of Johan Camargo’s rise to prominence. He’s exceeded expectations as the starting third baseman, making his case to man the position in 2019.
But even more surprising has been his power surge. He’s hammered 16 homers, with 14 coming since he was named the primary third baseman on May 20. That’s second-most on the team in that span, trailing Ronald Acuna’s 16.
3. Acuna is a homer away from 25, which would tie him for fifth-most in a single season before turning 21 years old (Eddie Mathews and Orlando Cepeda also hit 25). Mel Ott holds the record after hitting a staggering 42 in 1929.
4. Nick Markakis became the first NL player to reach 40 doubles Thursday. He’s one of five active players to have earned five 40-double campaigns, joining Albert Pujols, Miguel Cabrera, David Wright and Robinson Cano.
The Braves lead the NL with 276 doubles. That’s a whopping 24 more than the second-place Cubs’ total. The Braves are on pace for 319, which would fall short of the franchise record of 328 set in 2007.
5. The Braves could use innings from Gausman, who’s become their most reliable starter since being acquired at the trade deadline. He owns a 1.66 ERA, the eighth-best mark in the NL since the deadline, with opponents hitting .190 against him. Friday marks his first career start against Arizona.