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08/15/10 1:20 PM ET

Pitchers' duel on tap for finale in Atlanta

Ninety years ago, the Dodgers and Braves played the longest standoff in Major League history, their 26-inning 1-1 tie on May 1, 1920.

No one realistically expects a repeat of that history, but if they ever pay homage to that event, it could come Monday night.

After all, Chad Billingsley and Tommy Hanson, who face each other in the finale of the four-game series, have been bringing back the dead-ball era all by themselves.

Not only have both right-handers excelled in their previous five starts, but they have also inspired the best in their opponents. The result: nap time for scoreboard operators, and tense times for fans.

The Turner Field scoreboard crew could use the break after helping chronicle the Dodgers' most lopsided loss in three years, from which Billingsley must help them rebound.

The Dodgers surrendered a season high in runs in Sunday's 13-1 loss -- the traditionally pitching-rich team hadn't lost by as wide a margin since a 15-3 defeat to the Phillies on July 17, 2007.

At least they've got the right guy on tap to restore order. Four of Billingsley's last five starts resulted in shutouts, and a total of 14 runs between the Dodgers and their foes.

At least, Billingsley has a pair of wins to show for that scintillating stretch. Hanson has come up empty in his last five starts, even though he allowed a total of five runs in 33 2/3 innings (1.34 ERA) and held hitters to an average of .179 over that span.

So he had to watch Sunday's breakout jealously. But the 16-hit onslaught was reassuring, indicating there can be offensive life after Chipper Jones. The Braves had been in a fog the previous two days, managing a total of only two runs.

For Troy Glaus to lead Sunday's attack was a good omen, even if the former All-Star third baseman no longer plays at Jones' position. Glaus drove in as many runs on Sunday -- four -- as he had totaled in 18 games since July 25.

Dodgers: Dodgers struggling on the road
As the Dodgers and Braves continued their season-long trend of alternating wins and losses, Los Angeles is assured of returning home still without consecutive second-half road wins. The Dodgers last won consecutive away games on July 3-4 in Arizona.

Braves: Braves continue to roll at home
With at least a split assured in this set, the Braves remained with only one home-series loss this season, when they dropped two out of three to the Phillies from April 20-22. Atlanta is 36-12 since at Turner Field. ... Jason Heyward was hopeful of returning to the lineup for Monday's game after sitting Sunday with swelling in his right knee.

Worth noting
Formerly rabid rivals in the old National League West, the eight games this season between the Dodgers and the Braves are their most since 2000. The teams finished first and second in the old NL West three times between 1982-91.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.