May 18, 2014

Matt Wisler finally received some significant offensive support the last time he took the mound for the Atlanta Braves.

His teammates have hardly been productive since that outing.

The right-hander hopes that changes Thursday night when he looks for another strong outing to help the Braves avoid being swept in this three-game home set with the Milwaukee Brewers.

Wisler (2-3, 2.93 ERA) went 0-2 with a 4.44 ERA in four April starts but is 2-1 with a 1.80 ERA in four this month. He allowed a run and struck out a season-high seven for a second consecutive contest Friday over 6 2/3 innings of a 7-1 victory at Philadelphia.

"He's been pitching great all season long, especially these past few starts where he's been on top of his game," teammate Freddie Freeman told MLB's official website. "It's been going well for him, so hopefully it keeps going well."

Wisler, whose 2.60 run support average ranks among the lowest in baseball, received a season-high five runs while on the hill in his most recent effort.

In four games since, the Braves (12-33) have managed five runs and gone 2 for 29 with runners in scoring position. They will look to avoid a fourth consecutive defeat after falling to 2-19 at home with Wednesday's 3-2, 13-inning defeat.

Wisler, 0-2 with a 4.10 ERA in four starts at Turner Field, allowed three runs in 5 2/3 innings of a 5-3 road win July 6 in his only previous appearance against the Brewers (20-26).

Milwaukee has totaled six runs in the last three games but is in position to record its first series sweep since Sept. 1-3. The Brewers last swept a series on the road July 3-5 at Cincinnati.

Four of their last five games have been decided by one run.

Talented young shortstop Jonathan Villar delivered the go-ahead RBI single in the 13th for one of his two hits Wednesday.

"I'm happy," said Villar, batting .344 in his last 15 games. "We're winning. We're winning."

Milwaukee's Keon Broxton finally recorded his first hit in the 13th inning in his 28th career plate appearance spanning two seasons.

Wily Peralta (2-5, 6.99) is 1-1 in four starts against the Braves despite allowing three earned runs over 22 innings. He yielded that many in 5 2/3 innings of Friday's 3-2 loss to the New York Mets.

Despite falling to 0-5 with a 5.35 ERA in his last eight road starts, Peralta felt he made some progress following a May 14 start in which he gave up six runs and eight hits in 4 2/3 innings against San Diego.

"Between starts I've been working on just thinking about grabbing the ball than thinking about execution," the right-hander said. "I feel better and I think I'm going in a better direction.

"I think I can still do a better job than (Friday)."

One of Freeman's two hits in seven at-bats against Peralta left the park. Freeman is 1 for 18 in his last five games against Milwaukee and batting .147 in his last eight overall.

Atlanta's Nick Markakis is hitless in 15 straight at-bats.

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