Unsurprisingly, today’s matinee rubber game between the Braves and the Angels features your usual Braves lineup, with Eddie Rosario back in there against the righty-throwing Lucas Giolito, and Travis d’Arnaud returning to give Sean Murphy the day off.
Rosario sat last night to start, but entered the game late. d’Arnaud started in the first game of this series and gave way to Sean Murphy, who had a miserable game, last night. After a torrid start and quality hitting throughout the year, Murphy has entered his first real slump of the year since the All-Star Break, with a 7 wRC+ in 48 PAs. Notably, d’Arnaud has also hit poorly, albeit in half the PAs, with a 27 wRC+ in the “second half.” (Murphy still has an xwOBA edge over d’Arnaud in that span, but both guys have xwOBAs under .300 in this small sample.)
Here’s a history of the current Braves’ lineup against Giolito:
It’s a bit of an amusing imbalance in terms of familiarity, with Rosario having more experience against Giolito than the rest of his lineup-mates combined.
The Angels, meanwhile, are definitely shaking things up:
The top of the lineup looks similar-ish to what we’ve seen before, but Eduardo Escobar will get a start at third, and Jordyn Adams, the 17th pick overall in the 2018 draft, will make his major league debut and hit ninth while manning center field. Adams hasn’t hit well at Triple-A (93 wRC+), but is incredibly fast and should give the Angels a defensive boost today.
Of this lineup, only Randal Grichuk and Escobar have faced Chirinos before. Escobar has a homer and a deep fly off him, while Grichuk has a .393 wOBA / .359 xwOBA, including a homer and a few strikeouts in nine career PAs.