Atlanta Braves (50-43) at Chicago Cubs (40-52), 4:05 p.m. (ET)
07/11/2014 10:55 AM
07/12/2014 10:53 AM
(SportsNetwork.com) - Mike Minor has never lost in his career when facing the Chicago Cubs, but lately the Atlanta left-hander hasn't been able to beat any team.
Minor tries to end a nine-game winless skid (0-3) when he takes the ball Saturday afternoon for the Braves in the middle portion of a three-game series at Wrigley Field.
Minor's last victory came May 19 against Milwaukee. He owns a 5-0 mark with a 3.56 ERA in five starts against the Cubs, the most wins against any opponent in his career.
Minor's recent two starts have been against the Mets. On Monday he gave up two hits and a pair of runs in seven innings in a no-decision.
Edwin Jackson, who is 0-2 over his last three starts, counters for the Cubs. The righty is coming off a pair of six-inning performances, at Boston (July 1) and at Cincinnati (Monday). He suffered a 9-3 loss to the Reds after yielding seven hits and four runs.
Jackson is 0-3 with a 3.89 ERA in eight career games (six starts) against Atlanta.
Friday, Justin Ruggiano's RBI single in the bottom of the ninth lifted the Cubs to a 5-4 win.
After scoring the tying run in the top of the ninth, the Braves sent Jordan Walden (0-1) to the mound in the bottom half. The right-hander recorded two quick outs before giving up a single to Arismendy Alcantara, who stole second and crossed the plate on Ruggiano's hit to left.
"It's stuff you used to do as a kid playing wiffle ball in the back yard and you make believe the situation and now it's coming true," Ruggiano said. "You live for those kind of things."
Hector Rondon (2-3) got the win despite giving up one run on two hits in the ninth. Chicago starter Jake Arrieta allowed three runs on four hits with six strikeouts and three walks over 7 2/3 innings.
Ruggiano ended with two RBI for the Cubs, who have won two in a row since a six-game skid. Luis Valbuena, Chris Coghlan and Arrieta each drove in a run.
Freddie Freeman knocked in two runs for the Braves, who have lost five of six. Justin Upton and Christian Bethancourt added one RBI apiece.
Atlanta starter Alex Wood gave up four runs on five hits while striking out six and walking three over 5 1/3 innings.
"I thought we battled hard and scraped for some runs. I thought we played pretty well," Wood said.
The loss left Atlanta in a virtual tie with Washington atop the NL East.
The Braves have won nine of the last 11 meetings.
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