Washington (59-80) at Atlanta (81-58)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Atlanta, GA
Temp: 75° F
  • Game info: 7:35 pm EDT Fri Sep 10, 2004
  • TV: TBS
Preview | Box Score | Recap

The last-place Montreal Expos have found some late-season motivation.

“I’d much rather be playing teams that are going for the playoffs than not, because it gives you a challenge to go out there and try to knock them off and play kind of a spoiler role,” said Expos outfielder Brad Wilkerson.

“I think we’ve been doing that pretty much the second half.”

Montreal will try to continue playing spoiler when it begins a three-game series with the NL East-leading Atlanta Braves at Turner Field.

The Expos have won four of their last five games, and are coming off taking two of three from the wild card-contending Chicago Cubs.

Montreal, which is 18-18 since the All-Star break, blanked Chicago 6-0 on Wednesday as Scott Downs pitched a five-hitter to outduel Greg Maddux and knock the Cubs out of the wild-card lead.

The Braves have dropped a season high-tying three in a row, including Thursday’s 9-4 setback to Philadelphia.

Chipper Jones went 2-for-4 with a three-run homer for Atlanta, whose only other three-game skid came from June 20-23. Despite the slide, the Braves lead the East by seven games over second-place Florida.

The Braves have won 12 of 16 from Montreal this season, including two of three last weekend at Olympic Stadium.

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Starting Pitchers

J. Patterson Tex vs. J. Thomson KC
4-7 Record 14-8
5.03 ERA 3.72
99 K 133
46 BB 52
1.48 WHIP 1.32