Game #88: Diamondbacks @ Braves

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona's road-trip rolls on, into Atlanta to take on a Braves side who have won their last seven games in a row. We turn to Josh Collmenter, who has been our best starter this year.

ari_medium

Josh Collmenter
RHP, 7-4, 3.74
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Ervin Santana
RHP, 6-5, 4.05

Diamondbacks Lineup

  1. Ender Inciarte - CF
  2. David Peralta - :LF
  3. Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
  4. Miguel Montero - C
  5. Martin Prado - 3B
  6. Gerardo Parra - RF
  7. Nick Ahmed - SS
  8. Didi Gregorius - 2B
  9. Josh Collmenter - P

Okay, who among you, before the season began, picked Collmenter as being our most effective starting pitcher of the first half? Yet, that's where we sit. Even though he wasn't part of the rotation the first couple of times through, making his first appearance there in game #11, there's a good chance he'll reach the All-Star break with the most wins and best ERA. He's currently tied with Bronson Arroyo in the former category,, and will likely have one more chance after this afternoon to get his eighth win. And Josh's 3.74 ERA is also tops, with Chase Anderson his nearest rival at 3.91. [Though if you just consider starts, Collmenter's ERA goes up to 3.94]

He'll need to be on form to stop an Atlanta team that has been on fire of late, and the hitters will also have to be more like the bunch who showed up in the ninth inning last night, rather than the feeble band of the previous six and eight-ninths games. Over their current seven-game winning streak, the Braves' pitching staff have posted a 2.14 ERA and not allowed more than four runs in any contest. We all know about Craig Kimbrel, but Antony Varvaro has an ERA which is almost as good, and a K:BB ratio that's actually better than the closer. So if we're going to win, probably best if we don't wait until the eighth and ninth innings to do so.

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