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Brewers (36-48) vs Braves (40-42) series preview

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The Braves and the Brewers are actually quite comparable in the aggregate. It might actually make for an interestingly competitive series between two potential deadline sellers.

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier this season it seemed like they might beat the projections and hold onto at least some wild card hopes. But now it seems they're going to be perpetually stuck in third place in the NL East this year. They're two games under .500 and they might even sell off at the deadline.

The Braves are actually tied or 22nd in wRC+ (88) with the Brewers (and Padres). Freddie Freeman (145) and Juan Uribe (141) are their best offensive players. Cameron Maybin (119) has been solid as well. Nick Markakis (108) is their only other regular above league average offensively.

Overall the Braves pitching has been very similar to the Brewers. Their team has earned a team 5.5 fWAR where the Brewers have a 5.2 fWAR. The Braves are doing it in the opposite way to the Brewers. Their value comes from their rotation while the Brewers has come from their bullpen. The Braves rotation has still been mediocre though. They rank 16th in baseball.

The Braves traded uber closer Craig Kimbrel at the start of the season and replaced him with Jason Grilli who has experienced a bounce back at 38 years old. Luis Avilan and Jim Johnson have been good for Atlanta as well. After them the bullpen is a mess. Right now it's sitting at 6 so it's possible they add another sometime soon.

Pitching Match-Ups

Monday July 6, 7:10 pm CST: Kyle Lohse vs Matt Wisler

Matt Wisler was acquired from the Padres in the Kimbrel deal. He spent most of the season in AAA and will be making his fourth MLB start. He's seen positive results (2.60 ERA) despite some poor peripherals (11.1 K%, 6.9 BB%). But we're only talking about 17.1 IP. He has mid-rotation upside with potential for more.

He throws a fastball (92-93), slider, change-up, and curveball.

Tuesday July 7, 7:10 pm CST: Tyler Cravy vs Manny Banuelos

Manny Banuelos is another recently acquire starter who is new to the majors. He's made just one start so far but it was a good one. He went 5.2 innings striking out 7 batters while not allowing a run to score. His upside is a 3/4 starter though.

He throws a fastball (90-91), change-up, curveball, and slider.

Brewers related note: Matt Garza was unexpected put on the 15-Day disabled list earlier today with shoulder tendinitis. He will be replaced in the rotation with Tyler Cravy.

Wednesday July 8, 1:10 pm CST: Mike Fiers vs Julio Teheran

At one point Julio Teheran was a highly regarded pitching prospect. He turned in two very good seasons before 2015 and seemed poised to take over as the Braves top pitcher for years to come. Instead this season has seen him take a significant step backwards. His 18.9 K% and 8.9 BB% are both career worsts. He's also had home run problems (1.24 HR/9). His .273 BAA is 45 points higher than his previous career high. All this has led to a 4.60 ERA and 4.58 FIP.

He throws a fastball (90-91), slider, curveball, and change-up.

Statistics courtesy of FanGraphs