Mets @ Braves Series Preview

Although the series doesn't mean nearly as much as it used to, there is excitement whenever the Mets play the Braves. Though both teams have contrasting plans for October, the Braves still have something to play for. The Giants have played well all year and are only 5 ½ games behind Atlanta for the ever important playoff home field advantage. After being swept in San Francisco last week, the Braves know how important it will be to finish in the top spot.

Though both teams have vastly different plans for October, the Braves still have something to play for. The Giants have played well all year and are only 5 ½ games behind Atlanta for the ever important playoff home field advantage. After being swept in San Francisco last week, the Braves know how important it will be to finish in the top spot.

Atlanta enters tonight's game riding a three game winning steak, courtesy of a sweep against the Rockies where the Braves exploded for 26 runs during the weekend series in the Mile High city.

The Mets have been playing relatively well. Their six game win streak is in the past, but they are a respectable 3-3 on this current nine game road trip, including taking the series against an L.A. team that is battling for the Wild Card.

These are not the Mets of 1999 and 2000, but the rivalry still exists, and the team would like nothing more than to avenge the miserable four game sweep the Braves handed them the last time they played in Atlanta back in July.

Pitching Matchups:

Jae Weong Seo (7-8 4.20 ERA) will take the mound for the series opener. Seo has pitched well as of late, winning two straight, including a 5-1 win over San Diego. Seo gave up just one run on six hits in six innings. The Mets will be going against Shane Reynolds. Despite pitching well against the Giants (one run on five hits), Reynolds (10-6 5.18 ERA) was tagged with the loss.

The Mets will go with Al Leiter (12-7 4.47 ERA) in game two. Leiter was the victim of a weak offensive night during his last appearance. The lefty gave up just two runs over six innings, but his team still came up short, losing 2-1 to the Dodgers. Horacio Ramirez (8-4 4.26 ERA), the young pitcher out of Carson, California, has struggled in four out of his last five starts, including a 4-3 loss in San Francisco last week.

Steve Trachsel gets the nod in the series finale. Trachsel (13-7 4.01) has been the Mets hottest pitcher, winning four straight decisions, capped off by his latest performance, a 5-0 win over the Dodgers. Trachsel has not given up a run since August 13th. Atlanta will counter with Greg Maddux (12-104.19 ERA). Maddux has overcome early season struggles and has regained his dominance over opposing batters. Maddux has won six out of his last eight starts, including a 9-3 win over the Rockies, allowing three runs on three hits over six innings of work.

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