Braves should like Philly trip

July 16, 2002 9:48 AM
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Games for week ending July 21:

Mets at Reds: The Reds still in the mix with St. Louis for division lead. Mets seem out of it in the East, but can still play spoiler with their pitching. Al Leiter and slumping Jeff D’Amico are our selections to win twice.

Braves at Phils: The Braves now have best record in NL. They are deadly if they close going to the eighth inning. John Smoltz in the bullpen adds luster to starters. Tom Glavine Kevin Millwood take down stumbling Phils.

Brewers at Rockies: Looks like OVER is the play here. Colorado no place for wagers on sides. Big leads no obstacle here.

Cards at Pirates: St. Louis still in pain over the loss of Darryl Kile. Along with erratic pitching, they are tough to back. Management reaching for straws thinking Andy and Benes can help. Kip Wells and Josh Fogg add to Cards woes.

Astros at Cubs: The Cubs with new leader at the helm can be dangerous early. The Astros are making noise getting back in NL Central Division race. Could have problems with Cubs this time. Lieber and Wood slow Houston’s division drive.

Expos at Marlins: Don’t think Expos have enough to challenge for Wild Card position. Marlins aren’t getting any better since early-season rumbling. Expos right themselves with Tony Armas Jr., and Tomo Ohka doing the work.

Giants at Dodgers: The Giants can cut into the Dodgers’ lead. Need at least two wins. Dodgers minus Kevin Brown, but rest of the staff picked up the slack. Eric Gagne has been dynamite in the bullpen. Going with Jason Schmidt of SF and Odalis Perez for LA.

D’backs at Padres: D’backs seem cinch for either Division or Wild Card spot. Curt Schilling and Brian Anderson good for two against Padres, but don’t lay a big number with Schill.

Red Sox at Yanks: Boston needs the series more. Derek Lowe is dicey at this stage of the season. Pedro Martinez is no guarantee against Yanks. Anxious for Jeff Weaver to face him.

M’s at Angels: Time for the Angels to put up or shut up. Important series, but not do or die. Angels have to win at least two. Feeling here is Seattle has too many weapons for upstart Angels. Jamie Moyer and Fred Garcia grab two wins.

D’Rays at Jays: These games are to fill out the schedule. It’s your call.

ChiSox at O’s: Orioles played tough on the road. Slumping a bit at home. White Sox showing signs of life with the bats. Mark Buehrle good for a win here, but O’s take the remaining games.

Indians at Royals: The Royals have picked up their game, while Tribe has changed managers. May have motivation to do better in the second half. Baez had strong outing against Yanks. Expect more of the same here. Going against KC ace Paul Byrd.

Twins at Tigers: The Tigers are going no place. Twins headed for top spot in AL Central with nothing to stop them. Rincon and Santana capture two against light-hitting Tigers.

Rangers at A’s: Oakland serious threat with pitching to catch Seattle. Rangers no match for A’s, even with good bats. A’s pitching overcomes all. Going with Hudson, Mulder and Zito in a sweep.