National League Preview from The Sports Network
Sunday, September 15th (All times Eastern)
San Diego Padres (67-80) at Atlanta Braves (89-59), 1:35 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: San Diego - Burch Smith (0-1, 9.17) Atlanta - Julio Teheran (12-7, 3.05)
(Sports Network) - Julio Teheran gets his second career look at the San Diego Padres on Sunday afternoon when he takes the mound for the Atlanta Braves in the finale of a three-game series.
Teheran made a start in San Diego on June 10 and picked up a loss, giving up five runs over six innings. The key play in the 7-6 setback was a three-run homer he yielded to Will Venable in the fourth frame.
That was one of just a few hiccups for Teheran this year as he is 12-7 with a 3.05 earned run average over 27 starts. The righty had a start skipped before facing Miami on Tuesday and he earned a 4-3 win, giving up three runs over 6 2/3 innings. Teheran settled down after a three-run first inning and yielded five hits and three walks in the outing.
The 22-year-old has thrown 168 innings on the season.
The Padres will send 23-year-old Burch Smith to the mound today and he pitched much better in his last start after struggling in the role back in May.
Smith yielded 15 runs over 7 1/3 innings in three starts earlier this year, then appeared out of the bullpen three times in late June in early July. The Padres then gave the righty a start on Sept. 6 versus Colorado and he hurled four scoreless frames after yielding a pair of runs in the first inning.
Smith, though, did not factor into the decision despite seven strikeouts and is 0-1 with a 9.17 ERA at the Major League level. He was 6-3 with a 2.63 ERA in 18 starts across Double and Triple-A this season.
The Braves saw their magic number to clinch the NL East lowered to four with Saturday's 2-1 win. They lead the Washington Nationals, who lost to Philadelphia, by 11 games.
Freddie Freeman hit a solo homer among his three hits and Kris Medlen tossed 7 1/3 scoreless innings for the Braves.
"I think tonight more than even the past few, I established all three pitches early," Medlen said after winning his 14th game of the year by scattering four hits. "I knew I was going to have to establish all three, and usually it takes a couple innings to kind of get the curveball going, but everything felt really good from the get-go, and I just mixed pitches pretty nicely."
Chase Headley's homer off Atlanta closer Craig Kimbrel in the ninth made it a one-run game. Kimbrel, though, worked around a two-out walk to record his career-best 47th save -- the most in the majors this season.
Robbie Erlin got the start for San Diego and allowed two runs on eight hits over six innings.
"In the later innings, (my pitch count) crept up, resulting in a home run and base hits," Erlin said. "But I'm feeling more confident with my offspeed pitches."
San Diego has lost three of its last four.
The Padres swept a three-game set from the visiting Braves back in June, but lost three of four in Atlanta a season ago. They were outscored 19-5 in that set at Turner Field.
09/15 10:23:50 ET