Braves top Nationals to run winning streak to seven

September 6 2019 7:28 AM

The Atlanta Braves' march to the National League (NL) East title continued with a 4-2 win over the Washington Nationals on Thursday.

It was Atlanta's seventh straight win in MLB.

Left-hander Max Fried was brilliant, yielding only one hit and striking out nine in seven shut-out innings. Ronald Acuna Jr. keyed the offense with a solo home run and a pair of runs scored.

It was the 21-year-old's 37th home run of the season. According to ESPN, only three players have hit more home runs in a season before age 22: Hall of Famers Eddie Mathews, who hit 47, Mel Ott (42), and Frank Robinson (38).

The win gives Atlanta (87-54) an eight-game lead over the second-placed Nationals (78-61) in the NL East. The Braves' seat atop the division has never seemed in danger since the All-Star break. The Braves have had a consistently "safe" lead of around five to seven games throughout the second half.

Now, they have a chance to issue a death blow to their closest rivals, the Nationals and Philadelphia Phillies. Thursday's matchup with the Nationals was the first of 14 straight games the Braves have with Washington and Philadelphia that will see them play home-and-away series against each team through September 19. The Phillies are on the verge of elimination in the division race, but are still just four games back in the wildcard race. The Nationals have a two-game lead in the wildcard chase.


Schwarber's grand slam

Kyle Schwarber's grand slam highlighted a five-run sixth inning as the Chicago Cubs beat the Milwaukee Brewers 10-5.

Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Bryan Reynolds had two home runs and drove in three runs in a 10-7 loss to the Miami Marlins. Speaking of hot rookies, Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Bo Bichette also had two homers and three RBIs in a 6-4 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays.

Seattle Mariners Austin Nola and Kyle Seager both had a pair of home runs against the Houston Astros.

Oakland Athletics shortstop Marcus Semien was a perfect four for four at the plate and scored three runs in a 10-6 win against the Los Angeles Angels.


Woeful Webb

San Francisco Giants starter Logan Webb got touched for seven earned runs in 2.2 innings in a 10-0 loss to the St Louis Cardinals.


Moran's debut a memorable one

Marlins left-hander Brian Moran made his MLB debut, and he picked up his first strikeout against a familiar face – his younger brother, Pirates third baseman Colin Moran. According to Elias Sports Bureau, it was the first time since 1900 a brother has faced his brother in a pitcher vs. batter matchup in his MLB debut.

Phillip Ervin stuck a dagger in the Phillies' hearts with a walk-off shot for the Cincinnati Reds in the 11th.

Thursday's results

Cincinnati Reds 4-3 Philadelphia Phillies
Chicago White Sox 7-1 Cleveland Indians
Detroit Tigers 6-4 Kansas City Royals
St Louis Cardinals 10-0 San Francisco Giants
Oakland Athletics 10-6 Los Angeles Angels
Texas Rangers 3-1 Baltimore Orioles
Miami Marlins 10-7 Pittsburgh Pirates
Minnesota Twins 2-1 Boston Red Sox
Chicago Cubs 10-5 Milwaukee Brewers
Tampa Bay Rays 6-4 Toronto Blue Jays
Atlanta Braves 4-2 Washington Nationals
Houston Astros 11-9 Seattle Mariners


Yankees at Red Sox

It is the Yankees and Red Sox in September, although this one does not seem so special with Boston on the verge of elimination in the American League (AL) East, and longshots at this point to even win a wildcard spot. Yankees starter Domingo German (17-3, 4.01) still has a good shot at 20 victories.

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