Major League Baseball

Phils send Pivetta in pursuit of Braves

MLB8PHILLIES (45-40) AT BRAVES (50-36)
7:20 p.m. ET; FSSE, NBCSP, MLB.TV

Philadelphia’s Nick Pivetta will try to regain his status as a Braves nemesis while Atlanta rookie Bryse Wilson gets another chance to secure a spot in the rotation when the clubs meet Wednesday in the second game of a three-game series.

Pivetta (4-2, 5.63 ERA) faces Wilson (0-0, 8.31) at Atlanta’s SunTrust Park. The Phillies won the series opener 2-0 on Tuesday.

Philadelphia hopes Pivetta will provide a performance similar to that of Aaron Nola in the series opener. Nola threw eight scoreless innings, helping the Phillies win for the fifth time in seven games against Atlanta this season.

Pivetta is 4-1 with a 3.48 ERA in 10 career starts against the Braves. That ERA is inflated by two below-average efforts against Atlanta this season. He has allowed eight runs over 11 1/3 innings, a 6.37 ERA. In his last start against the Braves on June 14, Pivetta gave up four runs in 6 2/3 innings.

Pivetta has allowed 14 runs over his last three starts, amounting to a 7.15 ERA over 17 2/3 innings. In his most recent outing on June 26, Pivetta received no decision against the New York Mets when he gave up four runs on nine hits over 5 2/3 innings.

Prior to the bad spell, Pivetta had shown signs of returning to form in his two previous starts, when he allowed one run over 15 innings.

“I think he can do a better job of keeping his emotions in check,” Philadelphia manager Gabe Kapler said. “When he keeps his emotions in check, he doesn’t allow one pitch to spill into the next. He’s a much better pitcher.”

Wilson will be making his second start against Philadelphia this season. He received a no-decision against the Phillies on March 30, a game the Braves lost 8-6. Wilson worked 3 1/3 innings and allowed four runs on five hits with four walks and three strikeouts.

Wilson was recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett on June 27 and replaced 2018 All-Star Mike Foltynewicz in the rotation. He started that day against the Chicago Cubs and gave up six runs, four earned, in 4 1/3 innings, with six strikeouts and one walk.

Wilson will have to deal with the red-hot Scott Kingery, who is hitting .500 (8-for-16) against the Braves this season. The center fielder had 17 extra-base hits in June to become the first Philadelphia player with that many in a month since Domonic Brown in May 2013.

The Atlanta offense started out the new month on a cold note and was shut out for only the second time all season. The Braves hit a franchise-record 56 home runs in their 28 June games, eclipsing the old mark of 55 set in May 2003. They homered in 26 games and hit multiple home runs in 18 games en route to winning 20 times in the month.

“Twenty wins, that’s pretty impressive,” Atlanta first baseman Freddie Freeman said. “It’s hard to do that. Sometimes you just have to look back and take a step back and see what you really accomplished during a month.”

–Field Level Media

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