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TOPIC: The Braves swept three games in St. Louis last wee

The Braves swept three games in St. Louis last wee 2 weeks 2 days ago #1815

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MILWAUKEE — Jorge Polanco is expected to make his season debut Monday night when the Minnesota Twins open a two-game interleague series against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park.

Polanco will be reinstated Monday from his 80-game suspension for use of performance-enhancing drugs after going 6-for-13 in four games with Triple-A Rochester.

He batted .256 with 13 home runs http://www.texansauthorizedshops.com/authentic-martinas-rankin-jersey , 30 doubles in 133 games last year and was especially strong in the second half, slashing .293/.359/.511 with 10 homers and 43 RBIs.

That performance moved him into the No. 3 spot in the Twins’ lineup, but manager Paul Molitor said he probably won’t bat that high right away upon his return.

“We know what he did last year when he had a chance to move up into a pretty important role,” Molitor told reporters Sunday in Chicago. “I don’t know we’ll jump him up there that fast. For us to see him is going to be different than hearing about him and reading about him and texting him and all those kinds of things.

“We’ll see how it is. To be honest, coming up here and playing, even though he’s doing really well, it’s going to be a little different than what he’s been doing.”

Right-hander Kyle Gibson (2-6) starts for Minnesota. He posted a 2.45 ERA through his first four June starts but saw that number grow to 3.35 after allowing five runs in seven innings to the Chicago White Sox his last time out.

Gibson struck out seven in the game and walked just one but gave up a season-high 11 hits.

“I went back and looked at some of the hits I gave up,” Gibson said. “I don’t know if I just picked the wrong pitch at the wrong time or what. I executed quite a few pitches there, and they found holes.”

The Twins dropped a three-game weekend series to the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field and have lost eight of their last 10 overall.

Milwaukee struggled during the weekend, too, dropping the last two of a four-game series at Cincinnati. The Brewers managed just five total runs in those losses while allowing 20 Radim Vrbata Jersey , including a grand slam in each one.

“Two runs, three runs … You’re going to need more to win most games,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said.

Despite that showing, the Brewers will return home still leading the National League Central by a half-game over the Cubs, who will be idle Monday.

Brent Suter (8-5) gets the nod in the series opener. He’ll be looking to get back on track after his three-game winning streak was snapped last week by the Kansas City Royals.

Suter overcame a somewhat slow start to the season and has turned into a solid starter in the last two months. He’s 6-2 with a 3.50 ERA in his last eight starts. Before his outing against Kansas City, he hadn’t allowed more than three runs in his previous seven games.

Part of Suter’s success can be attributed to his pace, which is among the game’s fastest. That makes it difficult for hitters to settle in between pitches and, Suter admits, there can be a slight advantage to working quickly.

“I don’t want to quick-pitch people; I don’t do that,” he said. “But I want to keep the tempo up and let my fielders get back in and hit as quickly as possible. That’s how I operate. If that gets them uncomfortable, that’s fine Cheap Customized Arizona Cardinals Jerseys , but I’m just in attack mode and up-tempo.”

Suter is 1-0 with a 3.72 ERA in two career starts against the Twins, both of which came at Target Field. He held them to a run and five hits while striking out six in 5 2/3 innings on May 18.

MILWAUKEE — For the Atlanta Braves, the big question as they headed from a long three-game series in Yankee Stadium to Milwaukee concerns the status of star first baseman Freddie Freeman.

All indications are Freeman will play the opener of a four-game series with the Milwaukee Brewers, but it will not be official until the lineup card is posted Thursday afternoon at Miller Park.

“If you ask him, he’s going to say yes,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “But until we get there and see how it is, we won’t know. It was probably good that we got him out of there and started on some treatment.”

Freeman exited in the fourth inning of Thursday’s 6-2 loss to the New York Yankee Stadium with an upper right arm contusion. He was injured when he was hit in the third inning by CC Sabathia, and by pulling him early to get treatment, Freeman and the Braves hope the precautionary measure means he can play Thursday.

“Luckily, it didn’t hit my hand,” Freeman said. “I’ll take the elbow and a little soreness. As long as I have the strength in my arm tomorrow Cheap Customized Baltimore Ravens Jerseys , I can deal with the pain.”

Atlanta is 4-2 on its 10-game trip. The Braves swept three games in St. Louis last weekend and took a 5-3, 11-inning victory over the Yankees on Monday before losing the last two games.

“I thought we handled ourselves really well,” Snitker said. “We won a really tough game the first night, we put ourselves in a position to win today and today here we come again. The guys never quit. They know they can play with anybody and it’s a good sign.”

Milwaukee (51-35) is the first team in the National League to reach 50 wins after completing a three-game sweep of the Minnesota Twins with a 3-2 win on Wednesday.

Brad Miller and Nate Orf played roles in three close wins as Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell is employing a mix-and-match approach at shortstop. He is using that strategy while remaining optimistic that shortstop Orlando Arcia will rediscover his offensive stroke at Triple-A Colorado Springs and rejoin Milwaukee for a playoff push.

Miller has gotten off to a good start with the Brewers. He extended his hitting streak to nine games Wednesday and has a hit in 10 of 12 games since joining the team, with a pair of home runs.

Orf was batting .307 with an .875 OPS when he was summoned Monday from Triple-A and recorded his first career hit with a solo home run against the Twins.

Both are immediate offensive upgrades to Arcia, who was slashing .197/.231/.482 but remained in the regular lineup because of his defensive ability.

While Miller saw extensive action at the position earlier in his career and Orf has spent most of the season there at Colorado Springs, neither player is a natural shortstop so Counsell was prepared to sacrifice defense to shore up the bottom of the order.

“When we sent Orlando down, we had multiple players on the roster who aren’t true shortstops so we’re trying to find guys who can play shortstop and who can kind of fill in at shortstop,” he said. “I don’t think we have an answer, but this is how we’re going to try it.”

A more stable solution could be coming soon. Tyler Saladino was on a roll before suffering a severe ankle sprain on May 29.

In 16 games with the Brewers, he batted .324 with three home runs and eight RBIs while playing defense well enough to make it possible for Milwaukee to send Arcia down a first time on May 25.

Saladino has been rehabbing for the last week and could rejoin the team in the next few days.

“Tyler will be back soon and will end up having some of the shortstop duties Cheap Customized Chicago Bears Jerseys ,” Counsell said. “We’ll sit down here soon and figure that out.”

The right-handed hitting Orf is likely to get the starting nod Thursday when the Brewers face Braves left-hander Max Fried.

Fried (1-2, 2.55 ERA) returned to the rotation last week when Brandon McCarthy was placed on the disabled list and struck out 11 over 6 2/3 innings and earned his first victory of the season as Atlanta beat the Cardinals in St. Louis.

Fried remained with the team after his last outing but didn’t learn for sure that he’d get another start until Wednesday morning. He’s looking forward to getting his first taste of meaningful action as the two winningest teams in the National League face off for the first time this season.

Milwaukee counters with right-hander Jhoulys Chacin (6-3, 3.71) who bounced back from his worst outing of the season to hold the Cincinnati Reds to a run over five innings while striking out nine his last time out.

Signed to a two-year contract over the winter, Chacin has been a stabilizing force in the Brewers’ rotation. He leads the staff with 18 starts and 97 innings his season.

Chacin has pitched well against Atlanta throughout his career, posting a 3.94 ERA in six previous starts. Due to a lack of run support in those contests, is just 1-4 lifetime against the Braves.
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