Max Fried made another solid performance and the Atlanta Braves beat the Philadelphia Phillies ’bullpen 7-2 at Truist Park on Wednesday night.
George Solar and Freddie Freeman made an instant start under Aaron Nola’s back-to-back singles lead. After a fly out by Ozzie Albies, Austin Riley made the first run 1-0 by throwing the Bloop singles to the right.
Adam Duval then grounded Jean Segura who leaned to Didi Gregorius in second place. Duval beat the relay throw and Freeman scored to make it 2-0.
Max Fried, J.T. Realmuto and Andrew McCutchen allowed three singles to start the second but then straight. It was the last infield type from Ronald Torres’ bat to make it 2-1 with a goal from Matt Wearling. This put Freud on 17 runs.
Atlanta threatened third but couldn’t stop it. Dansby Swanson doubled the wall in the right center and then Fried moved to third on the ground. Solar worked to put the runners on the corners but Nola trapped Freeman.
Freud began to settle down as he gave Bryce Harper a perfect third blow, finishing a beautiful innings with a 3-3 curveball.
The Braves halved the home lead as Albiz took the lead in the inning. Nola hit Austin Riley and then Adam Duval got to fly for the second out. However, he couldn’t keep away Eddie Rosario who pitched 1-2 on the right for a double. Albiz was running on the play and scored from the first to make it 3-1.
Fried retired 10 straight shots before Odubel Herrera hit a double on the right field wall before moving to sixth. He went third on a passed ball and then returned home to Segura’s field to reduce the lead to 3-2. Freud then hit Harper again and Realmuto was caught nicely on the shoulder by Albis to end the inning.
After remaining on the ropes for two innings, Nola settled down and retired eight straight Brave Hitters between the fourth and sixth innings. He came out with seven hits, two walks and three runs in six innings and finished with four strikeouts.
Fried retired from the side at number seven. It was another great performance where he allowed only four shots and two runs but only one. He scored six runs off 98 pitches. It was the third match in a row where he played at least seven innings.
Jose Alvarado came in seventh for the Phillies and was welcomed by Solar who reached the infield singles. Freeman hit the first out again but Albis sent a single to center. Solar went to third as Herrera kicked the ball in the middle and gave Atlanta just one run out to runners-up in second and third. Joe Girardi will go to Bullpen and bring in Hector Neris to face Riley who doubled the line to the left to extend the lead to 5-2.
Neris hit Duvall a second time but then issued a back-to-back walk to Rosario and D’Arnaud to load the bottom. He was replaced by Sam Kunrad who allowed Swanson a broken bat single which brought him home with 2 more runs and made it 7-2.
Kunrad then ran pinch-hitter Jock Pederson to load at the bottom but Solar fielded to end the innings kindly. Brave sent 10 players into the innings and added four more runs.
Tyler Matzek allowed a pair of bassuners in the eighth but threw Segura out and then harmed the infield for Harper to escape. Atlanta’s pitching staff have done well in the first two games of the series on Harper where he has a 0-for-7 walk and four strikeouts.
Richard Rodriguez did the perfect ninth job to seal the victory.
With the win, the Braves go into the best 13 games of the 85-82 season on .500. They have now won five games in a row and have a 4.5 game lead in the division. Most importantly, they cut their magic number to one.
Atlanta could win their fourth consecutive division title on Wednesday when Ian Anderson faces Kyle Gibson.