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Jun 1, 2024 7:09 am

Chris Sale seeks eighth straight win as Braves face A’s

chris sale

Braves left-hander Chris Sale will go for his eighth straight win on Saturday afternoon when Atlanta hosts the Oakland A’s in the middle game of a three-game series.

Sale (8-1, 2.12 ERA) will be opposed by Oakland right-hander Aaron Brooks (0-2, 3.63). The Braves won the series opener 4-2 on Friday to end a two-game losing streak, while Oakland has lost three in a row.

Sale has not lost since April 13 and has given up only three runs over his past six starts. In his most recent start on Sunday, he pitched seven innings and allowed one run on four hits with one walk and eight strikeouts in an 8-1 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates in the final game of a six-game trip.

“Just doing what I need to do,” Sale said. “We all have our part on the team. Just posting every fifth day and trying to keep runs off the board. Take every start, you want to win. (The team) had a couple rough ones over the last couple days. You want to end on a good note heading back home.”

Sale has made 16 career appearances (11 starts) against Oakland, going 6-4 with a 2.69 ERA.

Brooks will make his fourth start since being recalled from Triple-A Las Vegas on May 15. He took the loss in his last start against the Houston Astros on Sunday when he pitched 4 1/3 innings and allowed five runs (one earned) on nine hits with three walks and one strikeout as Oakland fell 5-2.

Brooks was pitching well until shortstop Max Schuemann opened the door in the fourth inning by bobbling a ball for an error, then throwing wildly to second base for another error.

“After that play happens, you’d like to be able to get the next out,” Oakland manager Mark Kotsay said. “We kind of let the game slip away from us.”

Brooks has never faced the Braves.

The A’s had to place pitcher Lucas Erceg on the 15-day injured list Friday with a right forearm tightness. He becomes the eighth player to go on the list in the past 26 days. Oakland has had to use the injured list 19 times this season, tied with the Rangers Texas for the most in the majors, and currently has 13 players sidelined.

Oakland might get a lift from right-hander Brady Basso, who made his major league debut on Friday and pitched a perfect inning.

The struggling Atlanta offense scored in the first inning for the first time in 10 games on Friday and showed signs of emerging from its slumber. The Braves had scored two or fewer runs in 10 of the past 24 games. Marcell Ozuna had a single and has reached base safely in 24 consecutive games.

“It was nice to see the team put up runs early like that,” Atlanta starter Reynaldo Lopez said. “You kind of get the sense that, as an offense, we’re starting to click a little bit. I think what we did tonight was just a demonstration of what we’re capable of, and I think we’re just starting to heat up.”

–Field Level Media

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