Braves-Marlins Preview

The Associated Press

Aside from a pair of losses last week, the NL East-leading Atlanta Braves have made things awfully tough on the league-worst Miami Marlins.

The Braves go for a sixth consecutive road win over the Marlins as the division rivals continue a three-game set Tuesday night.

Atlanta (51-38) has dominated Miami (32-56) over the last few years, taking 30 of the past 40 matchups. The Braves had outscored the Marlins 40-10 during an eight-game win streak before losing Wednesday and Thursday, then got back to their winning ways in the series Monday with a 7-1, 14-inning victory.

Justin Upton sparked the six-run 14th with a go-ahead two-run double as Atlanta posted its NL-leading 26th comeback win. The Braves improved to 11-2 at Miami, where they have won five straight by a 23-3 margin.

"I'm so tired," said Gerald Laird, who went 1 for 2 with two RBIs after replacing Brian McCann behind the plate in the 12th.

"It's a weird game. "We gave our offense a chance, and we knew we weren't going to get shut out all night."

Miami stranded 12 and went 2 for 10 with runners in scoring position. The Marlins had an opportunity in the 13th after their first two batters reached but couldn't come through.

"We had tons of opportunities and just couldn't get the big hit," manager Mike Redmond said. "In those close games, it's going to come down to who's going to get it, and they got it."

Miami has been limited to a .179 average during a four-game losing streak, its longest since dropping a season-high nine in a row May 21-30.

The Marlins will try to get back on track against Braves starter Julio Teheran (6-4, 3.23 ERA), who has posted a 2.45 ERA while striking out 76 and walking 12 in his last 13 starts. The right-hander, though, labored through five innings - his shortest outing since April 18 - in a 4-3 loss to Miami on Thursday. He allowed three runs.

Henderson Alvarez (0-0, 5.40) surrendered three runs in five innings opposite Teheran last week in his season debut. The right-hander, acquired from Toronto in November, had been sidelined with inflammation in his throwing shoulder.

"I felt like my command wasn't there in the first inning," Alvarez, who allowed all three runs in the first, said through a translator. "After that I was able to get in the zone."

Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton has gone 5 for 33 with 13 strikeouts and one extra-base hit in a nine-game stretch. He's 3 for 24 in seven matchups with Atlanta this season.

Hitting a major league-low .173, B.J. Upton has three hits in his last 27 at-bats. He's 1 for 21 versus Miami this year and 3 for 14 against Alvarez.

Justin Upton has batted .378 with seven homers, 30 RBIs and 28 runs in his last 33 games against the Marlins.

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