Atlanta Braves @Pittsburgh Pirates
Monday, 8/18 7:05 PM
Ervin Santana, RHP (12-6, 3.66 ERA/3.13 FIP/3.33 xFIP) vs Vance Worley, RHP (5-2, 2.32 ERA/3.44 FIP/3.65 xFIP)
Santana's health and dependability were questioned as he produced a 5.96 ERA in eight starts from May 16-June 22. But the right-hander has regained a feel for his slider as he's gone 7-1 with a 2.95 ERA in his past nine starts.
Tuesday, 8/19 7:05 PMWorley will try to recover from his second start (of 10) in which he didn't make it through six innings. Even with that hiccup, has a 1.62 ERA in five second-half starts. Control continues to be his main weapon, with just 11 walks in 68 innings.
Aaron Harang, RHP (9-7, 3.51 ERA/3.74 FIP/4.28 xFIP) vs Francisco Liriano, LHP (3-9, 3.78 ERA/3.76 FIP/3.40 xFIP)
Harang has allowed more than four earned runs in just three of his 25 starts. Two of these starts, including his most recent, were completed in afternoon games. He has a 4.25 ERA in 13 starts at PNC Park.
The left-hander's record remains quite misleading as he has managed a win in only two of his eight quality starts. Has twice as many strikeouts (57) as hits allowed (28) in his last nine starts, covering 50 innings.
Wednesday, 8/20 7:05 PM
Alex Wood, LHP (6-8, 2.84 ERA/3.51 FIP/3.45 xFIP) vs Gerrit Cole, RHP (7-4, 3.78 ERA/3.75 FIP/3.56 xFIP)
Wood is pitching to a 1.45 ERA over his last six starts and is at .500 despite the Majors' second-lowest run support. He had more walks (two) than strikeouts (1) last time out, but still shut down Oakland (two runs, four hits in six frames).
Cole makes his first start since July 4, after which he landed on the DL with a sore lat. He returns after four Triple-A rehab starts, the last two shutout efforts totaling 12 innings. His seven wins still rank second among Pirates starters.