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Atlanta rides four-game winning streak into Milwaukee

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The Braves have not lost a series since early June.  Can they make it 11 straight?

Miami Marlins v Atlanta Braves Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images

The All-Star Break has been known to put a dent in certain teams’ momentum, but the Braves showed no signs of slowing down this past weekend while sweeping the young upstart San Diego Padres. They will now head to Milwaukee (which, as Alice Cooper will tell you, is Algonquin for “the good land”) to face a Brewers team that is spinning its wheels.

They have lost seven of their last 10, 18 of their last 28, and currently sit at 48-46. Despite this recent run of futility, they remain 2½ games behind the Cubs in the NL Central. The Brewers have lost three straight series to losing teams - two of which came against their division rivals Reds and Pirates, and another this weekend against the lowly Giants. After coming within one game from the World Series in 2018, the Brew Crew have mostly underachieved in 2019. While some of this can be attributed to playing in baseball’s toughest division, both their pitching and their offense (outside of the Herculean work of Christian Yelich) have taken a step back this year.

The visiting Braves will come to town carrying a 57-37 record, with a comfortable seven-game lead over the Nationals. They will send Max Fried to the mound to make his first post All-Star break start; Fried sits at 9-4 on the year with a 4.29 ERA | 3.92 FIP, alongside his 8.85 K/9 rate and 2.65 BB/9 rate. You know all about Max Fried - you know him, you love him, he looks like an 18th century painting. His hair is way too tall. His curveball is something out of a cartoon.

The Brewers, meanwhile, will try to topple the Braves with righty Adrian Houser. After debuting in 2018, Houser lost his rookie eligibility earlier this year. He has taken a step forward with his strikeout-to-walk ratio in 2019 (going from 1.14 in 2018 to 2.47 in 2019), and his sinker can be a dangerous pitch when he is on. He comes to the table with a 2-3 record and a 4.01 ERA | 4.23 FIP.

After working primarily in relief for the first three months of the season, this will be Houser’s fourth straight start, and sixth overall in 2019. He has fared much worse in a starting role, surrendering an 8.47 ERA (6.67 FIP) and a slash line of .373/.447/.680 to opposing batters. When facing a Braves offense that can often smell blood in the water, things could get interesting quickly in the land of beer and cheese.

Both teams have plenty of incentive to notch a few victories in this series - the Braves to extend their already robust division lead, and the Brewers to hopefully close theirs.

Game Info

Game Date/Time: Monday, July 15, 8:10 p.m. ET

Location: Miller Park - Milwaukee, WI

TV: Fox Sports Southeast

Streaming: MLB.tv

Radio: 680 AM / 93.7 FM The Fan, Rock 100.5, Braves Radio Network