Braves’ Sanchez will try to complete sweep of Giants
SAN FRANCISCO — Anibal Sanchez will attempt to turn the tables on the San Francisco Giants in more ways than one Wednesday afternoon when he takes the mound for the finale in a three-game series between teams headed in opposite directions.
The Braves (81-64) won a second straight in San Francisco and fourth in a row overall Tuesday night when Mike Foltynewicz threw a complete-game six-hitter in a 4-1 victory that increased Atlanta’s lead in the National League East to a season-best 6 1/2 games over Philadelphia.
Sanchez (6-5, 3.09 ERA) will seek to complete what would be the Braves’ first three-game sweep in San Francisco since 2011, which also was the last time Atlanta won a series at AT&T Park.
The Braves already have clinched a series win, having also captured Monday’s series opener by the same 4-1 count.
The Giants, who are 0-for-September in 10 starts, have scored no more than one run in six of their last seven home games.
Atlanta also will be attempting to draw even with San Francisco in the season series, after the Giants ventured to Atlanta and swept a three-game set in May.
Sanchez will be facing the Giants for the second time since suffering a 2-0 loss for the Detroit Tigers in Game 3 of the 2012 World Series. He allowed a key triple to Gregor Blanco in that game.
Sanchez was outpitched that night by Ryan Vogelsong.
The 34-year-old extracted a measure of revenge with a 6-2 win for the Tigers over the Giants last season. It improved his lifetime mark against the Giants in regular-season games to 4-1 with a 2.13 ERA in six starts.
Sanchez is winless in his last six outings.
Coincidentally, one of the Braves’ stars other than Foltynewicz in Tuesday’s win has a link to the 2012 World Series as well.
Charlie Culberson, a first-round pick of the Giants in 2007, came off the bench to hit a two-run home run in the fifth inning to account for half the Braves’ runs Tuesday.
The Giants traded Culberson to the Colorado Rockies at the 2012 trade deadline for second baseman Marco Scutaro, who went on to be one of San Francisco’s postseason heroes that year.
Left-hander Derek Holland (7-8, 3.54 ERA) will oppose Sanchez with the task of ending the Giants’ 10-game losing streak, their longest since 1996.
Holland has been a victim of the Giants’ cold bats of late, having gone 1-0 in his last five starts despite a 1.61 ERA. He has allowed 19 hits and five runs in those 28 innings.
The 31-year-old has pitched only once in his career against the Braves, getting a no-decision in a 2-1 win for the Texas Rangers in 2014. He limited Atlanta to one run in seven innings that night.
Holland will go head-to-head with young Braves standout Ozzie Albies for the first time. The 21-year-old has contributed two doubles and a triple to the Giants’ downfall in the series.