The Atlanta Braves will wrap up their current road trip Wednesday when they take on the Texas Rangers in the rubber match of a three-game series. Wednesday’s game will feature a marquee pitching matchup between Atlanta’s Spencer Strider and Texas’ Nathan Eovaldi.
After a breakout season in 2022, Strider has taken another step forward for Atlanta and is among the early favorites for the Cy Young Award in the National League. Strider has been key for a Braves’ rotation that will be without Max Fried and Kyle Wright for the foreseeable future. Strider’s been electric and will come into Wednesday’s start with a. 2.51 ERA, a 1.63 FIP and a league best 42.9% strikeout rate. Strider leads the majors in strikeouts with 79 in 46 2/3 innings.
He allowed five hits, two runs (one earned) and struck out 12 in 6 2/3 innings in his last start against the Blue Jays. He has reached double figures in strikeouts in three of his last four starts and has 22 in his last 11 2/3 innings.
Eovaldi is no slouch either and comes into Wednesday’s start with a 25 2/3 inning scoreless streak. He is second in the majors with 2.2 fWAR, ranking just ahead of Strider who is third. Eovaldi has been lights out over his last three starts allowing a combined 11 hits, zero runs and has 25 strikeouts in 25 2/3 innings.
Ronald Acuña Jr. homered again Tuesday night and moved back to the top of FanGraphs’ leaderboard with 2.4 fWAR. Acuña has now homered in three straight games and has four in his last six. His 179 wRC+ leads the National League and trails only Brent Rooker and Yandy Diaz. One big thing about Acuña’s start to the season is how much he has cut down on his strikeouts. Entering play Wednesday, Acuña has a strikeout rate of just 14.1%. For the season, he has 25 walks and just 27 strikeouts. Even better, he has a .442 wOBA and a .479 xwOBA which means that he has underperformed his metrics which is astounding when you look at the complete body of work.
Game Date/Time: Wednesday, May 17, 8:05 p.m. ET
Location: Globe Life Field, Arlington, Texas
TV: Bally Sports South
Radio: 680 AM / 93.7 FM The Fan