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Sean Newcomb to start for Braves in Game 3

Atlanta Braves v San Francisco Giants Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images

Kevin Gausman was expected to take the mound on Sunday for the Atlanta Braves in Game 3 of the NLDS. Now, the Dodgers will face left-hander Sean Newcomb, who gets the start after pitching two innings of relief in Game 1.

Newcomb has faced the Dodgers twice this year, but more notably on July 29, when he was one strike away from no-hitting LA.

He found out today he would be getting the start, but knew it would be a possibility last night. “[Brian Snitker] came up and talked to me on the plane before we took off, let me know that that was a possibility,” Newcomb said. “So kind of get my mind right before I kind of went to bed.”

Braves manager Brian Snitker talked about his decision to start Newcomb instead of Gausman.

“We need to win,” he said. “And not that Gausman doesn’t give us that opportunity. We like how Newcomb matches up with them and the success that he’s had against the Dodgers this year.”

“So we’re going to let Newcomb get the thing off the ground. He felt good about it. And I told him that we need you to get this thing off the ground. You don’t need to take a no-hitter into the ninth inning with a strike left or whatever. We just want to get this thing flying and be all hands on deck.”

In Newcomb’s other start versus the Dodgers, he lasted 5 13 innings. He allowed five runs on seven hits, as well as allowing two homers.

It’s been a rough two months for the 25-year-old. Since August 7, Newcomb owns a 5.68 ERA, while batters are hitting .276.

“Obviously their backs are against the wall, and they feel it’s the best chance to give them a chance to win tomorrow,” said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts. “So he’s had success against us. I feel that just some history and a little bit more familiarity, you know, I don’t know what to expect of his length tomorrow.”

“Obviously it’s contingent upon how he performs. But I like the guys we’re going to run out there.”

Roberts added that the decision hasn’t been made on just how right-handed the Dodgers lineup will be. During the season, Los Angeles went platoon heavy, but that might not be the case Sunday.

“There might be a little bit of a tweak or two because -- just appreciating the fact that he pitched a couple days ago, don’t know how long it’s going to go,” said Roberts. “They’ve got Teheran and Gausman in the pen. You just kind of never want to expose yourself to a complete line change.”