Atlanta Braves: The week ahead

Schedule


Monday:
Atlanta at Miami, 7:10 p.m. (SportSouth); Tim Hudson (14-6, 3.66 ERA) vs. Wade LeBlanc (2-4, 2.95)
Tuesday: Atlanta at Miami, 7:10 p.m. (SportSouth); Paul Maholm (12-8, 3.90) vs. Nate Eovaldi (4-12, 4.71)
Wednesday: Atlanta at Miami, 7:10 p.m. (SportSouth); Kris Medlen (8-1, 1.62) vs. Josh Johnson (8-12, 3.81)
Friday: Atlanta at Philadelphia, 7:05 p.m. (Peachtree TV, FOX Sports South); Tommy Hanson (12-8, 4.33) vs. Kyle Kendrick (9-11, 3.97)
Saturday: Atlanta at Philadelphia, 4:05 p.m. (FOX); Mike Minor (9-10, 4.1) vs. Roy Halladay (10-7, 4.03)
Sunday: Atlanta at Philadelphia, 1:35 p.m. (Fox Sports South); Hudson vs. Cliff Lee (5-7, 3.36)

Look out for:

Braves have won three straight games and are 5½ games back with 15 games to play, thanks to their first sweep of the Nationals since 2009. They’re seven games ahead of the Cardinals in the wild card race. … The Braves activated Ben Sheets from the DL over the weekend, so he’s available to pitch out of the bullpen, if needed. … There’s a potentially strong pitching matchup on Wednesday, when Kris Medlen and Josh Johnson face off in Miami. Medlen is 7-0 in his nine starts, and even though Johnson is only 3-5 in his past 10 starts, he has a 2.88 ERA in that span. … The Marlins have lost four of their past six, but took two of three from the Reds this weekend. … The Phillies won seven in a row before going to Houston, which took three of four games from the once-surging Phillies. Philly plays at the Mets before hosting the Braves this weekend. … The Braves are 10-5 this September, compared to going 9-18 last year.

Who’s hot:

Medlen shows no signs of cooling off after his career-high 13 strikeouts in Friday’s 2-1 victory over the Nationals. He’s 2-0 this month, dominating the Nationals without getting the victory, and has struck out 28 in is past 22 innings. … Jason Heyward is hitting .340 with four homers and 10 RBIs against the Marlins this year. … Mike Minor (9-10) is 2-0 with a 0.48 ERA (1 run in 18 2/3 innings) in September. He had pitched 17 2/3 scoreless innings before he allowed a run in the Braves’ 5-1 victory over the Nationals on Sunday. … Freddie Freeman is hitting .471 (8-for-17) with his second career triple during his five-game hitting streak. … Martin Prado is hitting .348 (8-for-23) in his past six games. … Dan Uggla is hitting .297 (11-for-37) in his past 10 games.

Who’s not:

Tommy Hanson is winless in his past six starts (0-3, 4.50 ERA) after leaving Saturday’s game trailing 4-2. …. Paul Maholm has a 10.03 ERA this month (20 hits and 13 earned runs in his past 11 2/3 innings). … Michael Bourn is hitting .208 (11-for-48) with two steals this month. … Juan Francisco is hitting .143 (2-for-14) this month. … Christhian Martinez is 0-2 with a 5.02 (eight runs and 17 hits) in his past 14 1/3 innings.

Injuries:


Atlanta:
P Brandon Beachy (Tommy John surgery) will be out until next summer; OF Matt Diaz (thumb) and P Jair Jurrjens (groin) and are on the 15-day DL.
Miami: 2B Emilio Bonafacio (knee), OF Logan Morrison (knee) is on the 60-day DL and INF Nick Green (thumb) is on the 15-day DL.
Philadelphia: 3B Placido Polanco (back), C Brian Schneider (hamstring) and P Vance Worley (elbow) are on the 15-day DL.