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Mon, Aug 12, 2013 - 7:10 PM ET
 

Phillies-Braves Preview

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The Atlanta Braves have been swinging the bats with authority during their hot stretch, though they could be missing two key members of the lineup Monday.

Considering the way the Philadelphia Phillies have struggled on the road and Julio Teheran has been pitching, Atlanta might not need them.

The Braves look for their 16th win in 17 games as they try to extend Philadelphia's longest road losing streak in 14 years.

After getting blanked for the first time since June 22 to end a 14-game winning streak, Atlanta (72-46) bounced back with a 9-4 victory over Miami on Sunday. Jason Heyward matched a career high with four hits and Freddie Freeman added a three-run homer.

"When you win 14 in a row, it's always a good thing and then the next thing you know you get shut out," said Freeman, hitting .417 over his last 12 games. "You don't want that to keep going."

The Braves have averaged 5.7 runs and batted .319 with runners in scoring position over their last 16 games, but they could be without Justin Upton and Brian McCann in the opener of this three-game series. Upton left Sunday's game with cramping in his left hamstring, while McCann was out of the lineup for the second straight day because of a sore right knee.

Upton has six home runs and 13 RBIs over his last 10 games. McCann has gone 12 for 21 (.571) in five games against the Phillies this season.

Even if they aren't able to play, Atlanta appears to be in a strong position to continue its run with Teheran (9-5, 2.96 ERA) on the mound.

The right-hander seeks his third straight win while handing Philadelphia (52-65) its 12th consecutive road loss. The Phillies haven't lost 12 straight away from home since Aug. 28-Sept. 14, 1999.

They've dropped 17 of 20 overall.

"Since I've been managing in the major leagues, this is definitely the toughest stretch we've ever had," said manager Charlie Manuel, who remains one win away from 1,000 for his career.

Teheran has 27 strikeouts over 24 innings while going 2-0 with a 1.13 ERA in his last four starts - all Atlanta victories.

His only two games against the Phillies came in 2011, going 0-1 with a 4.70 ERA.

Jimmy Rollins has homered off Teheran and had one of his team's four hits Sunday, when Philadelphia failed to put a runner in scoring position in a 6-0 loss at Washington. The Phillies have averaged 1.9 runs while batting .194 during their road slide.

Michael Young, given Sunday off, is in a 5-for-41 slump on the road and has gone 5 for 31 against the Braves this season.

Cole Hamels (4-13, 3.81) also hasn't had things go his way lately. He has the most losses in the NL and hasn't won since July 9, but he's yielded just four runs over 22 innings in his last three outings. The Phillies lost all of those games while giving him four runs of support, and their 3.23 run-support average in his starts ranks among the worst in baseball.

Hamels hasn't earned a victory in his last five starts in Atlanta, going 0-2 with a 5.46 ERA. He lost there on opening day in his only matchup with the Braves this year, surrendering five runs over five innings in a 7-5 defeat.

Upton, Freeman and Dan Uggla took Hamels deep in that contest, though Uggla is batting .158 with 18 strikeouts in 57 career at-bats against him.

The Braves have taken six of nine meetings from the Phillies this season.

Tagged: Braves, Phillies, Cole Hamels, Brian McCann, Justin Upton, Freddie Freeman

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