Braves-Red Sox Preview
By NICOLINO DIBENEDETTO
(AP) -- The Atlanta Braves are tied for the most road victories in baseball.
Jason Heyward and Martin Prado have been big reasons for that recently.
The duo looks to continue their hot hitting and help the Braves to a fourth straight win Saturday night against the Red Sox.
Atlanta's 23 road wins ties it with Texas for most in the majors. The Braves (38-32) opened this three-game series with a 4-1 victory Friday night for their third straight win overall and seventh in eight road contests.
Heyward may not be happy that the team's road trip concludes Sunday since he's batting .452 with three doubles, four homers and nine RBIs in his last eight games away from Turner Field. He had three hits and two runs Friday and is 7 for 11 in his last three contests.
Prado probably feels the same. He's hitting .351 with two homers, six RBIs and seven runs during that stretch, and is 7 for 17 in four career games at Fenway Park after going 3 for 5 Friday.
Randall Delgado (4-7, 4.12 ERA) would like to see that production continue as he takes the mound against Boston (36-34) for the first time.
Delgado deserved better than losses in his last two starts but his teammates were unable to score in either game. He limited Baltimore to two runs and three hits over eight innings of a 2-0 defeat Sunday, with one of those runs scoring on a balk in the sixth.
"A tremendous outing," manager Fredi Gonzalez told the team's official website. "I think we took a big step forward with him. ... He was terrific."
That world would not be used to describe Delgado in four interleague starts. The right-hander is 0-4 with a 5.14 ERA against the AL.
He'll face a Red Sox team that managed only three hits in Friday's loss after scoring 28 runs during a three-game sweep of Miami that extended their win streak to five.
Daniel Nava provided one of the few bright spots Friday, connecting for an RBI double. The left fielder is 9 for 14 with two doubles and three RBIs in his last five games.
Franklin Morales (0-1, 3.14) is scheduled to get the ball for at least one more time in place of the injured Josh Beckett (right shoulder inflammation).
Morales was solid Sunday at Wrigley Field in his first start since April 2009. He yielded two runs and four hits while striking out a career-high nine in five innings before leaving without a decision in a 7-4 win.
"We had a hunch he could perform well in that situation and he proved our hunch correct," manager Bobby Valentine said. "He pitched five pretty good innings."
The left-hander is making his first start versus the Braves. He's faced them four times in relief, allowing two runs and four walks in 3 1-3 innings. This will be his first matchup with Atlanta since April 18, 2010, when he blew a save and took a loss with Colorado.
Updated June 23, 2012