One day after rallying from a six-run deficit in the eighth inning, the Montreal Expos look to build some momentum as they host the NL East-leading Atlanta Braves in the middle game of their weekend series.
The Expos have won three straight following a stretch in which they dropped 12 of 15. Montreal will look to Zach Day to keep its streak going, as the 25-year-old right-hander is coming off the disabled list to make his first start in nearly two months.
Day was hit hard in his last two outings before going on the DL on May 31 with inflammation in his right shoulder. He gave up a combined nine runs and 16 hits over 10 2-3 innings in losses to Philadelphia on May 23, and Florida on May 28.
Ron Calloway hit a two-out, game-tying double in the ninth inning off John Smoltz on Friday, and Orlando Cabrera scored on a wild pitch in the 11th to give the Expos a 9-8 win. Montreal trailed 8-2 before scoring five runs in the eighth.
“It’s great, especially against the Braves,” Cabrera said. “It was a team effort. We took advantage of their mistakes.”
It was Smoltz’s first blown save since June 19, and just his third in 40 opportunities this season.
“You know, (the Expos) never roll over so it’s frustrating because it was a game where we had it well in hand,” Smoltz said.
The Braves have lost three of five since a stretch in which they won 14 of 16.
“Nobody ever wants to be a part of something like that,” Reynolds said. “It was just one of those games.”
STANDINGS: Braves - 1st place, NL East. Expos - 4th place, 14 1/2 GB, NL East.
BRAVES PROBABLE STARTER: Reynolds (7-5, 5.77 ERA). The right-hander is 9-3 with a 3.32 ERA in 22 appearances, including 20 starts, against the Expos. Reynolds is 5-1 with a 4.72 ERA in 10 road starts this season.
EXPOS PROBABLE STARTER: Day (4-3, 3.44 ERA). Day gave up one run in 5 1-3 innings in a rehab start with Class A Brevard on Monday. He is 1-0 with a 1.80 ERA in four career appearances, including one start, against the Braves.
OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Braves - Javy Lopez, .324 avg. and 28 HRs; Gary Sheffield, 76 RBIs and 79 runs; Rafael Furcal, 16 SBs. Expos - Jose Vidro, .328 avg.; Cabrera, 13 HRs, 53 RBIs and 67 runs; Endy Chavez, 15 SBs.
SEASON SERIES: Braves, 6-5.
STREAKS AND NOTES: Braves - The loss Friday dropped Atlanta to 52-2 when leading after seven innings. … Since the All-Star break, CF Andruw Jones is hitting .395 (15-for-38) with five doubles, two homers, seven RBIs and 13 runs scored. … LF Chipper Jones is one RBI short of 900 for his career. Jones got one on Friday, one day after moving ahead of Hank Aaron into second place in Atlanta history. Dale Murphy had an Atlanta-record 1,143 RBIs for the Braves from 1976-90. Expos - RF Vladimir Guerrero, who returned from a herniated disc Monday after missing 39 games, went 52 at-bats without a homer before connecting in the second inning off LHP Horacio Ramirez. Guerrero hadn’t homered since May 15 at Colorado. … RF Guerrero is hitting .393 (11-for-28) against RHP Reynolds. … Reynolds has allowed opposing hitters to bat .306 with 13 HRs and 41 walks in 98 1-3 innings this season.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Braves - 31-21 on the road; Expos - 32-18 at home.
INJURIES: Braves - RHP Paul Byrd (elbow), 15-day DL. Expos - 3B Fernando Tatis (chest), 15-day DL; RHP Orlando Hernandez (shoulder), 15-day DL; RHP Dan Smith (shoulder), 15-day DL; LHP Scott Stewart (appendicitis), 15-day DL; RHP Tony Armas Jr. (shoulder), 60-day DL.