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GameThread, 6/4/2022: Braves @ Rockies

Spencer Strider vs. Kyle Freeland

Atlanta Braves v Colorado Rockies Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

The Braves and Rockies are back at it for Game Three of a weekend set at Coors Field. The Braves give Game One hero Travis d’Arnaud a day off in lieu of William Contreras; Marcell Ozuna drops to sixth. At this point I have no idea what the Braves are doing with their lineup, but that’s a minor concern in the grand scheme of things.

Ozuna hasn’t hit sixth in a lineup since April of 2017, when he was with the Marlins. He has a garish .299 wOBA/88 wRC+/-0.2 fWAR, but his .357 xwOBA is pretty good... though notably worse than everyone else in the lineup today for the Braves except Ozzie Albies, Adam Duvall, and Michael Harris II.

It’s a novel defensive arrangement for the Braves, as they’ve never done Contreras catching, Harris in center, and Ozuna DHing yet this season.

The Rockies will shuffle things up a bit. Charlie Blackmon and Connor Joe switch spots at the top of the order, and Ryan McMahon slides ahead of Brendan Rodgers. This is a lot fewer lefties than the Diamondbacks threw at Spencer Strider; the Rockies are not starting bench lefty outfielder Sam Hilliard, who actually has a .330 xwOBA (but .264 wOBA) this year; that’s a better xwOBA than Randal Grichuk has this year, and Grichuk’s outputs this season (88 wRC+) are largely based on him pounding lefties.

While this is a novel lineup for Colorado, they’ve used these nine guys in these positions in four games so far this season, and are 1-3 in them.

Statcast graphic!

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