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National League Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, August 14 (All times Eastern)

Los Angeles Dodgers (69-53) at Atlanta Braves (61-59), 12:10 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Los Angeles - Roberto Hernandez (6-8, 3.83) Atlanta - Aaron Harang (9-6, 3.31)

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Atlanta Braves look to come away with a split of a four-game series versus the Los Angeles Dodgers when the two clubs close out their set Thursday afternoon at Turner Field.

After losing the first two games of this series by scores of 6-2 and 4-2, the Braves returned the favor with Wednesday's 3-2 win. The victory didn't come easy, as Braves closer Craig Kimbrel needed to work out of a ninth-inning jam to record his 35th save.

Kimbrel walked Andre Ethier to start the inning and the speedy Dee Gordon reached on an infield single. Kimbrel got Dodgers star outfielder Yasiel Puig swinging for the first out and Adrian Gonzalez singled to load the bases for Matt Kemp, who grounded into a game-ending double play.

"(Kimbrel) doesn't get rattled," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said of his closer. "Maybe that's maturity being in those situations."

Ervin Santana posted his 12th win (12-6) and allowed two runs with nine strikeouts across six innings.

Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons returned to the lineup and drove in two runs. He hadn't played since Aug. 5 because of an ankle injury. Justin Upton knocked in the other run for the Braves, who won for only the third time in the last 14 tries and remained five games behind Washington for the NL East lead. The Nationals defeated the New York Mets Wednesday night.

The Braves are 3-3 on a 10-game homestand and will host Oakland next for three games. The homestand comes on the heels of an 0-8 road trip.

Atlanta is 9-16 since the All-Star break and will send Aaron Harang to the mound Thursday in hopes of earning a split with Los Angeles. Harang made 31 starts for the Dodgers in 2012 and went 10-10 with a 3.61 earned run average. He has recorded five straight no-decisions -- all Atlanta losses -- and threw seven innings of one-run ball in a 4-1 loss to Washington on Saturday.

Harang is 9-6 with a 3.31 ERA and hasn't won 10 games in a season since his lone stint with the Dodgers. The veteran right-hander, who won four straight starts from June 24-July 10, is 4-3 in 13 home outings and 4-6 with a 4.40 ERA in 12 career starts against the Dodgers.

The Dodgers will try again for a series win Thursday in the finale of their nine-game road trip (5-3). They still have the best record in the National League at 69-53 and almost pulled off the comeback last night.

Carl Crawford went 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored, while Gordon and A.J. Ellis posted two hits apiece. Miguel Rojas knocked in a run for the Dodgers, whose lead atop the NL West standings was trimmed to five games over San Francisco after the Giants defeated the Chicago White Sox Wednesday.

"We ran into a great starting pitcher," Ellis said of Santana.

Puig walked and struck out four times, but Crawford continued his torrid pace at the plate. Crawford is batting .433 with five runs and 13 hits in his last nine games (7 starts). Kemp, meanwhile, has hit safely in his last nine games and in 11 of the past 12 since Aug. 2.

Dodgers starter Hyun-Jin Ryu was aiming for his 14th win of the season, but fell to 13-6 after he surrendered all three runs and six hits over 5 2/3 innings. Ryu struck out seven and walked two, and left the game with a right leg strain. He is day-to-day.

"There's a little concern because it's a new area that's never bothered me before," Ryu said through an interpreter. "So right now, the only thing I want to do is sleep through and see how I feel tomorrow morning."

The Dodgers will return home after today's game to start a nine-game stay versus Milwaukee, San Diego and New York (Mets) at Chavez Ravine.

Taking the mound for LA Thursday will be Roberto Hernandez. Hernandez was recently acquired in a trade with Philadelphia because Josh Beckett was hampered by a hip issue and made his Dodgers debut in a 9-3 loss to the Brewers last Friday. He pitched well in the no-decision, charged with two runs and three hits in six innings.

Hernandez struck out five and walked none. He is 6-8 overall this season with a 3.83 earned run average and will make his fifth career start against the Braves. The right-hander is 2-1 with a 3.81 ERA in the first four starts.

Los Angeles swept a three-game series with the Braves in late July and has won seven of the last 10 meetings between the two ballclubs.

08/14 10:20:35 ET

  • ACC: NC State at Georgia Tech

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Arkansas at Florida

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: Waste Management Phoenix Open

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Big 10: Michigan at Michigan State

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NHL: Hurricanes vs. St. Louis

    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • ACC: NC State at Georgia Tech

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-FM

  • NHL: Carolina Hurricanes at NY Rangers

    Saturday at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
NBA
Final
ORL 100
MIL 115
Final
IND 103
NYK 82
Final
MEM 99
DEN 69
3rd
LAL 65
CHI 51
 
Final
PROV 83
DEP 72
Final
RUTG 51
MSU 71
Final
ARMY 71
BU 67
 
Final
RFLSH 75
BRY 68
 
Final
MERC 75
CHAT 72
 
Final
LIU 67
CCST 55
 
Final
TOWS 74
COC 70
 
Final
UMASS 66
DAY 64
Final
FUR 59
ETST 55
 
Final
ODU 71
FIU 56
Final
RMU 87
FD 65
 
Final
CHAR 86
FATL 61
Final
LIB 53
HIGH 72
 
Final
UNF 86
KNST 67
 
Final
FLGC 78
LIP 62
 
Final
OSU 80
MD 56
Final
Terriers 73
MNTER 67
 
Final
STET 85
NKENTUCKY 75
 
Final
WAGN 75
SHU 64
 
Final
GMAS 68
STLU 60
 
Final
JVU 65
USCU 78
 
Final
VMI 70
WCU 85
 
Final
LATU 69
WKENT 56
Final
UNCG 42
WOFF 58
 
Final
DET 93
YOUNG 87
 
Final
GSOUT 83
APP 46
 
Final
TENNM 81
EILL 51
 
Final
GHND 64
HC 54
 
Final
CIN 70
UCONN 58
Final
NDST 61
DEN 54
 
Final
SD 55
MAST 66
 
Final
UWMIL 71
ILLCH 65
 
Final
BEL 103
JVST 82
 
Final
SMISS 54
MARS 69
Final
TXSA 69
MTST 58
Final
PETE 49
RIDE 58
 
Final
SEMIZ 61
SIUE 75
 
Final
TENST 64
TENT 56
 
Final
NDAK 60
WEBER 67
 
Final
SALA 89
LALAF 85
 
Final
ARKST 65
ARKLR 75
 
Final
TROY 55
LAMON 58
 
Final
TXARL 74
UGST 88
 
Final
MURST 85
EKENT 78
 
Final
NCOL 79
IDST 76
 
Final
MIZZ 53
KENT 69
Final
GONZ 64
PORT 46
Final
UTEP 71
UAB 69
Final
GRCN 78
UMKC 57
 
Final
WLVRN 78
CHIST 62
 
1st OT
USC 72
COL 70
 
2nd
UCI 63
CPSL 53
 
2nd
CSNO 65
HAW 76
 
Final
PAC 43
PEPP 50
 
2nd
SDU 54
SCU 44
 
2nd
UCD 67
UCSB 62
 
2nd
UCLA 60
UTAH 50
 
Final
PORST 54
MONT 73
 
Final
SACST 75
MNTST 59
 
2nd
CSFU 52
LBSU 46
 
2nd
GAELS 44
LMU 37
 
1st
WASU 30
CAL 30
 
1st
BYU 34
USF 28
 
Final
NYI 2
BOS 5
Final
NYR 0
MON 1
Final
PHI 5
WIN 2
Final
TOR 1
ARI 3
Final
FLA 3
CLB 2
Final
TAM 5
DET 1
Final
STL 5
NAS 4
Final
CAL 0
MIN 1
2nd Intermission
EDM 3
BUF 2
 
2nd Intermission
SJS 6
ANA 1