Milwaukee (41-50) at Atlanta (53-37)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Atlanta, GA
Temp: 88° F
  • Game info: 7:10 pm EDT Sat Jul 17, 2010
  • TV: FSWI, SPSO
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Tim Hudson(notes) and the NL East-leading Atlanta Braves have been nearly unbeatable at Turner Field, but they’ve been vulnerable there recently.

Hudson looks to help the Braves begin re-establishing their home dominance Saturday night when they face the Milwaukee Brewers.

Atlanta (53-37) leads the division by five games over the Mets, partly due to owning the best home record in baseball at 31-11. However, the Braves are 5-4 in the last nine at Turner Field, batting .234 with three homers and averaging 3.3 runs in that span.

They lost at home again Friday, falling 9-3 to Milwaukee after opening this four-game set with a 2-1 victory a day earlier.

“We didn’t do anything,” third baseman Chipper Jones(notes) told the team’s official website. “We didn’t pitch, play defense or hit at all. It’s a good formula to get taken out behind the woodshed.”

Hudson (9-4, 2.30 ERA) is 5-2 with a 1.85 ERA in seven home starts, but lost his most recent outing there July 4. The right-hander allowed three runs in eight innings of a 3-2 defeat to Florida.

The three-time All-Star responded with a stellar effort on the road six days later, limiting the Mets to four hits in seven innings of a 4-0 win.

Hudson hasn’t won consecutive games since a personal three-game winning streak May 11-21. That stretch started with an 11-3 victory over Milwaukee, during which Hudson overcame a career high-tying six walks to yield one run in six innings.

He’s 3-2 with a 2.98 ERA in seven starts against the Brewers.

The Braves might be without Jones after he sustained a mild left hamstring strain Friday when he hit a popup with the bases loaded in the seventh inning. He went 0 for 3 in the loss, but is hitting .476 with four homers and eight RBIs in his last seven games against the Brewers.

Jones said there’s a 50 percent chance of him playing Saturday.

“It’s nothing major,” he said. “It’s just a precautionary measure right now.”

Milwaukee’s offense has come alive lately, batting .300 with nine homers and 25 runs during a 4-1 stretch.

Ryan Braun is a major reason for that success. He’s hitting .381 with three homers and five RBIs after connecting for a two-run shot Friday.

The All-Star left fielder does most of his damage on the road with a .346 average, eight homers and 37 of his 56 RBIs. That production could continue Saturday since he’s 5 for 11 against Hudson.

The Brewers will turn to Chris Narveson(notes) (7-6, 6.02), who has lost consecutive starts with a 14.04 ERA after winning three of his previous four with a 3.70 ERA.

The left-hander turned in perhaps the worst performance of his career July 7, getting tagged for 10 runs while serving up three homers and committing a throwing error in 3 1-3 innings of a 15-2 home loss to San Francisco.

A start on the road may not be ideal for Narveson, who is 0-3 with a 7.71 ERA in his past four away games.

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Starting Pitchers

C. Narveson Mia vs. T. Hudson SF
12-9 Record 17-9
4.99 ERA 2.83
137 K 139
59 BB 74
1.38 WHIP 1.15

Scoreboard

Saturday, Jul 17