Preview: Atlanta going for split with Red Sox at Fenway

The Atlanta Braves dropped the first of their two games with Boston by a 7-1 final. Spencer Strider takes the rubber hoping to help the Braves split the brief two-game series.

Atlanta Braves v Boston Red Sox
Atlanta Braves v Boston Red Sox / Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages

There was just one highlight of note and one run scored for the Atlanta Braves in Tuesday's loss to the Boston Red Sox.

A triple play was incredible to see but became a footnote in a lopsided 7-1 defeat at Fenway for the Braves. Charlie Morton struggled and couldn't get through four innings, walking five batters and giving up four earned runs.

Atlanta's currently in the midst of a 4-6 stretch, but still maintains a double-digit lead in the NL East with the Phillies trailing far behind. A split of this two-game series with the Red Sox would help the Braves stay in front and get back to their winnings ways before returning to Truist Park for a six-game homestand starting on Friday.

What to Watch for in Wednesday's game

Strider's Strikeout Surge

Spencer Strider is set to blast past 400 career strikeouts and 200 strikeouts on the season, still more than 20 strikeouts ahead of the rest of the field in major league baseball.

He's got 62 strikeouts in his last six games, an ERA of slightly more than 3.00, and an FIP of 1.94 in that span.

Strider's overall ERA for the season has been higher than some expected, creeping up closer to 4.00 after nine earned runs in his last two starts. As always with him, a double-digit strikeout performance is on the table, but he'll have his hands full with a top-five Red Sox offense opposite him.

Red Sox Rookies Raising the Bar

Boston has been able to keep pace behind a powerful offense and some surprises on the pitching staff. Two of the biggest surprises have been Masataka Yoshida and Brayan Bello.

Yoshida has stormed to the front of the AL Rookie of the Year race behind a .320 batting average and OPS just under .900. Over his last 15 games, he's hitting .385/.403/.631 with three home runs and 12 RBIs. One of those homers coming against Atlanta on Tuesday night.

Bello has become a key piece in the Boston rotation, and may take on a bigger role should Boston choose to move some pitching at the deadline. Since the beginning of June, Bello has posted a 3.38 ERA and held opposing batters to a .221 average in that stretch.

Regardless of what the Red Sox do at next week's trade deadline, Bello and Yoshida are key pieces of Boston's future, and worth watching among the crop of amazing young talent throughout baseball.

Braves (64-35) at Red Sox (54-57)
When: 7:00 p.m. ET
Where: Fenway Park, Boston, MA
How to Watch: ESPN
How to Listen: 680 AM/93.7 FM The Fan