Division leaders to meet when Twins meet Braves

A pair of top-line starting pitchers will battle Monday for the NL East-leading atlanta braves Host the AL Central-leading minnesota twins in the opening game of the three-match series

Braves Will send Spencer Strider (8-2, 3.93 ERA) against Minnesota’s Sonny Gray (4-1, 2.56) in a duel between two proven right-handers

Braves Coming off a 4–1 road trip, they have won 10 of their last 11 and won the last two games of a three-game series against NL Central-leading Cincinnati. Twins The hosts won two of three over the Detroit Tigers over the weekend, including a 6-3 win in 10 innings on Sunday. Minnesota has won four of its last five

Teams have not met since 2019 Braves took two or three in minneapolis

Strider leads the major leagues with 136 strikeouts and is coming off a bounce-back effort at Philadelphia on Tuesday. He limited the Phillies to one run in six innings after giving up 13 runs in nine combined innings in his previous two starts. Strider struck out nine on Tuesday and became the second pitcher since 1901 to have 300 strikeouts in his first 35 starts, joining Doc Gooden.

Strider never faced it Twins

Gray didn’t take into account the decision in his most recent game against the Boston Red Sox on Wednesday. Twins clinched the 5–4 win on a 10th-inning walk-off single by Kyle Farmer. Gray pitched five innings and allowed three runs on six hits, including two walks and five strikeouts.

Gray has made five career starts against Braves, going 0–2 with a 3.23 ERA. He last pitched for Cincinnati on August 10, 2021, facing Atlanta

Both the teams are hitting the ball well.

Atlanta first baseman Matt Olson hit his 25th homer on Sunday, the pivotal three-run shot, and has seven bombs in his last nine games. Five of his last six hits have left the ballpark, and he is tied with Shohei Ohtani for the top spot in the majors.

In the last 11 games, Braves 89 on 125 hits with 30 home runs and 14 stolen bases. Atlanta holds a six-game lead over Miami in the NL East

“I think we’re just taking the next steps,” Olson said. “We’re coming together one through nine (in order). We’re swinging it well, guys are throwing well. Hopefully we can keep going as the season goes on.”

One of Minnesota’s hottest hitters has been third baseman Royce Lewis. He was 3 for 4 on Sunday, scoring the game-winning run in the 10th inning and extending his hitting streak to a career-best seven games.

During the streak, Lewis is batting .462 (12-for-26) with a double, two homers, and five RBIs. He has consistently reached a career-best 10th inning on safe base.

“It’s just our good routine to pop (hitting coach David Popkins) and stay on top of that,” Lewis said. “Every day is a piece, a different pitcher, and we’re making the right adjustments.”

–Field Level Media