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National League Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, July 11 (All times Eastern)

Atlanta Braves (50-42) at Chicago Cubs (39-52), 4:05 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Atlanta - Alex Wood (6-7, 3.14) Chicago - Jake Arrieta (5-1, 1.78)

(SportsNetwork.com) - You might think a series with the Chicago Cubs would be the perfect remedy for a reeling Atlanta Braves team. But with Jake Arrieta on the mound for the Cubs, that remedy isn't quite as guaranteed to work.

The Braves head to Wrigley Field on Friday afternoon to begin a three-game series with the Cubs after dropping three of four in New York, a stretch which pushed them out of sole possession of first place in the National League East.

And under most circumstances, meeting a Cubs team they've beaten in nine of the last 10 meetings would be ideal, but the Braves enter in an offensive funk after scoring three or fewer runs for the fifth straight game. They've scored 11 runs in those five, have not hit a home run and have batted .130 with runners in scoring position.

In Arrieta, they face the Cubs' de-facto ace since the trade of Jeff Samardzija.

He's 4-0 in six starts since June 9, has held opponents to a .131 average in those games and has an ERA of 0.89.

"I was the guy in college and enjoyed that role," Arrieta said. "The college game is completely different, and the season is structured a completely different way, but I still understand that role."

He gave up one run in six innings of the Cubs' 2-1 loss at Washington on Sunday, and is 1-0 at Wrigley this season with a 1.17 ERA in four starts.

The Braves touched him for five runs in five innings in his lone career meeting with them, when he was with Baltimore in 2011.

The Cubs have averaged fewer than three runs per game in the last 10 against the Braves and scored only four runs in a May series at Turner Field.

Alex Wood can continue that dominance for Atlanta when he makes his fourth start since replacing injured teammate Gavin Floyd in June.

He allowed two runs on just three hits in a 3-1 loss to Arizona on Sunday and has a 2.25 ERA in three starts since assuming Floyd's turn. In 10 overall starts in 2014, he's 3-6 with a respectable 2.77 ERA.

He's never started against Chicago, but has tossed two scoreless innings of relief against them this season.

On Thursday in New York, Aaron Harang tossed seven strong innings, Craig Kimbrel recorded a four-out save and the Braves beat the Mets, 3-1, to avoid a four-game sweep at Citi Field.

Harang (9-6) won his fourth straight start after holding the Mets to a run on four hits and four walks.

Andrelton Simmons had two hits and scored two runs for Atlanta.

In Cincinnati, Luis Valbuena's two-run triple in the top of the 12th inning lifted the Cubs over the Reds, 6-4, at Great American Ball Park.

Arismendy Alcantara, in his second big league game, went 4-for-5 with three RBI and two runs scored for the Cubs. Starlin Castro added a pair of RBI for Chicago, which went 5-6 on its 11-game road trip.

07/11 10:51:47 ET

  • Sun Bowl: Duke vs. Arizona State

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CBB: Louisiana Tech at NC State

    Tuesday at 7:00 pm on WRAL-FM

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 17
CLE 13
2nd
NYR 1
CAR 0
 
Final
TOR 118
NYK 108
Final
CLE 105
MEM 91
Final
MIA 100
BOS 84
 
Final
BRK 110
DET 105
 
4th
SAC 106
LAL 98
 
4th
ORL 88
PHI 96
 
Final
WAS 92
PHO 104
 
3rd
MIN 57
IND 62
 
3rd
OKC 68
NOP 70
 
Final
UVA 76
HARV 27
Final
BGU 68
FERST 82
 
Final
ARMY 72
MAINE 69
 
Final
QUIN 60
ORST 52
Final
CLST 69
USF 65
 
Final
CARK 55
CCAR 72
 
Final
UWGB 66
ARKLR 46
 
Final
RAD 74
CORN 61
 
Final
UNT 62
CREI 58
Final
CAN 67
HC 48
 
Final
USB 67
GHND 52
 
Final
OKST 64
MD 73
Final
WINT 100
REIN 72
 
Final
UGST 68
SMISS 55
Final
NEOM 77
TXPA 72
 
Final
STLU 58
VERM 55
 
Final
UNCA 62
WCU 66
 
Final
EVAN 81
ALAST 63
 
Final
HART 82
FIU 69
 
Final
VALPO 82
GOSHEN 55
 
Final
LIP 69
PEAY 63
 
Final
DEN 46
BRY 48
 
Final
MONT 62
SD 67
 
Final
MTST 65
TENST 47
Final
SAMF 64
LAMON 50
 
Final
SCAR 78
COKR 52
 
Final
HAMP 75
NARZ 66
 
Final
SDU 71
SDCHR 61
 
Final
BC 71
USC 75
 
Final
NICST 64
TROY 65
 
Final
BRAD 47
UCI 55
 
Final
UGA 65
SHU 47
 
Final
ALA 60
APP 59
 
2nd
KSU 48
NDST 48
 
2nd
WASU 62
SJST 40
 
9:00pm Tonight
UTEP
ALCOR
 
10:00pm Tonight
SEAT
SACST
 
3rd
DET 1
COL 1
 
3rd
EDM 5
DAL 5
 
2nd
BOS 1
BUF 2
 
2nd
NYR 1
CAR 0
 
2nd
CHI 2
TOR 0
 
9:00pm Tonight
WIN
PHI
Final
NOS 14
ATL 30
Final
HOU 25
BAL 13
Final
CAR 17
CLE 13
Final
CHI 14
DET 20
Final
TAM 3
GBP 20
Final
PIT 20
KAN 12
Final
MIA 37
MIN 35
Final
NYJ 16
NEP 17
Final
STL 27
NYG 37
Final
OAK 26
BUF 24
Final
DAL 42
IND 7
1st
ARI 0
SEA 0