It will be an exciting night at Truist Park as the Atlanta Braves hope to get a series win against the Pirates and retire the number of a Braves legend.
Atlanta's offense exploded in game one with the Pirates as they secured an 8-2 win. Bryce Elder was excellent through 7 innings on Friday night and Dylan Dodd will hope for the same success in a spot start on Saturday.
Before the game, the Braves will retire the number of Andruw Jones who spent 11 years with the team. He was one of the best defenders in all of baseball during his time in the league. There are so many iconic moments when thinking back on his career with Atlanta.
Hopefully the Braves can get a win on the night his number is immortalized.
Dylan Dodd will get the spot start for the Braves and hopes to feed off of the success of Bryce Elder from Friday night. Dodd got a little bit of time at the MLB level earlier in the season but it did not go well for him. He's spent most of the year at the Triple-A level.
His ERA through 24.1 innings at the MLB level is 7.40 with 8 walks and 12 strikeouts. The last start at the big league level came on June 14th in Detroit. He pitched just 4 innings allowing 5 runs on 6 hits with 3 walks and 2 strikeouts.
Dodd has struggled a bit with his ERA at the Triple-A level as well. The ERA is 6.55 through 66 allowing 49 runs on 83 hits with 27 walks and 59 strikeouts. His biggest issue this year has been command and the ability to put batters away.
Atlanta will just be looking for a serviceable start from Dodd and at least try to give them 5 or 6 innings of work.
Pittsburgh will be starting Johan Oviedo, who has a 4.27 ERA through 158 innings at the MLB level in 2023. So, he's not been the best but he's eaten some innings for them which is valuable. He is a ground-ball pitcher with less-than-stellar rates for strikeouts and walks per nine innings.
As mentioned all season, the Braves are not a team pitchers can take lightly. This game is no different. Oviedo has decent breaking pitches but doesn't always have success when it comes to his fastball.
He will want to be wary of the Braves offense including Matt Olson, who is making a push for the franchise record in home runs and RBI. He's just 5 homers away from Andruw Jones' record of 51 in 2005. The Braves record for RBI in a season is 132 set by Gary Sheffield and Olson is at 116 currently so it's definitely a possibility.
His teammate Ronald Acuna Jr. is on an absolute tear right now as well and is on pace for more history himself. He's already reached 30 homers and 60 stolen bases in a season which has never been done before. He's also on pace for 40 homers and 70 stolen bases. If he gets to 40 homers that will be the first of his career.
He's also chasing an incredible feat which is becoming one of the few players in MLB history to lead both the AL and NL in total bases and stolen bases in the same season. That list includes legendary names such as Honus Wagner and Ty Cobb. Acuna would be just the third player in big league history to accomplish this. That right there is something that only once in a generation talents can accomplish.
Game 2 kicks off from Truist Park in Atlanta at 7:20 PM EST and can be watched on Bally Sports Southeast and MLB Network (out-of-market only). You can also listen via 680 AM/93.7 FM The Fan.