Major League Baseball
Milwaukee at Atlanta
When: 7:35 PM ET, Friday, June 23, 2017
Where: SunTrust Park, Cumberland, Georgia

Eric Sogard and the Milwaukee Brewers continue to stand out as a few of baseball’s biggest first-half surprises, and they look to stay on top of the National League Central as they begin a three-game series Friday against the host Atlanta Braves. Sogard collected three hits and scored twice in Thursday’s 4-2 victory over Pittsburgh, raising his average to .366 since joining Milwaukee, which is 7-3 in its last 10 games as it starts a six-game road trip.

Milwaukee closer Corey Knebel set a major-league record Thursday for consecutive games with a strikeout by a reliever to start a season, pushing his streak to 38 contests while recording his 12th save in 15 attempts. Atlanta took three of four from San Francisco and enters the weekend having won seven of its last 10 after Thursday’s 12-11 victory, but left fielder Matt Kemp and second baseman Brandon Phillips left the series finale due to injuries. Nick Markakis finished 4-for-5 with three RBIs and is 30 hits from reaching 2,000 for his career. Ender Inciarte scored twice and recorded two hits to raise his average to .308.

TV: 7:35 p.m. ET, FSN Wisconsin (Milwaukee), FSN South (Atlanta)

PITCHING MATCHUP: Brewers RH Jimmy Nelson (5-3, 3.28 ERA) vs. Braves RH Mike Foltynewicz (4-5, 4.26)

Nelson makes his 15th start of the season after firing the first complete game of his career, a victory over San Diego on Sunday in which he gave up one run and six hits while registering 10 strikeouts. The 28-year-old led the NL with 16 losses a year ago but has allowed fewer than two earned runs in five of his last nine turns, recording double-digit strikeouts three times while posting a 2.24 ERA. Nelson lost to Atlanta on April 29, surrendering five runs and 11 hits in five innings.

Foltynewicz rebounded from a rough outing by holding Miami to two runs and seven hits in six innings, but he settled for a no-decision six days after surrendering eight runs in 3 1/3 frames against Washington. The 25-year-old started June with a 14-inning scoreless streak over his first two outings and owns a 3.86 ERA this month. Foltynewicz suffered a loss at Milwaukee on April 30, when he yielded four runs - one earned - and four hits in six innings.


1. Atlanta’s offense has averaged 7.1 runs and 11.2 hits over its last 10 games.

2. Milwaukee INF Jonathan Villar (back) and OF Ryan Braun (calf) were scheduled to begin rehab assignments Thursday with Single-A Wisconsin, but the game was postponed by rain. Both players could be ready for Milwaukee’s series at Cincinnati next week.

3. The Braves won two of three at Milwaukee in late April, averaging eight runs per game in the series.

PREDICTION: Brewers 5, Braves 2
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away East Central West IL
Milwaukee 40-35 W2 21-22 19-13 6-4 18-15 12-13 4-3
Atlanta 34-38 W2 18-19 16-19 16-20 6-10 8-3 4-5
Last Meeting
Milwaukee Atlanta
Date Away Home Avg HR OPS Avg HR OPS
4/30/17 ATL 3 MIL 4 .161 2 .516 .219 1 .577
Player Stats
Season Series
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
Milwaukee O. Arcia .364 4 1.182
Atlanta F. Freeman .385 5 1.352
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
Milwaukee D. Santana 3 3 7
Atlanta M. Kemp 3 3 9
Pitching ERA Avg K
Milwaukee 8.00 .227 20
Atlanta 4.15 .345 25
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
Milwaukee T. Shaw .298 75 .902
Atlanta M. Kemp .320 78 .911
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
Milwaukee E. Thames 20 50 40
Atlanta F. Freeman 14 35 25
Pitching ERA Avg K
Milwaukee 4.24 .252 599
Atlanta 4.63 .269 496