The Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies will meet in Game 1 of the NLDS Tuesday afternoon at Truist Park. The Braves will take the field after five days off after securing a bye for the first round. The Phillies secured the final wild card spot in the National League and swept two straight from the Cardinals in St. Louis to advance to the Division Series.
The Braves will go with left-hander Max Fried in Game 1. The Phillies used Zack Wheeler and Aaron Nola to defeat the Cardinals. That means it will be Ranger Suarez who gets the nod in Game 1 Tuesday.
Game 1 has an early start time of 1:07 p.m. ET and will be broadcast nationally on Fox. If you are stuck at work, we will be live blogging the game here with updates coming every inning.
It looked it was going to be a quick first inning for Max Fried initially who got Kyle Schwarber to ground out on the first pitch of the game. Rhys Hoskins flew out for the second out before J.T. Realmuto punched a single to right off the glove of Orlando Arcia at second. A single by Bryce Harper put runners at the corners and Nick Castellanos brought home the first run with a single to right that dropped just in front of Ronald Acuna. Alec Bohm made it 2-0 with yet another single to right before Fried got Jean Segura to ground out to end the inning. Fried threw just 17 pitches in the inning, but the Phillies were aggressive and took advantage.
The Braves looked like they were going to answer right back. Ronald Acuna Jr. doubled into the left field corner to get things started.
Dansby Swanson struck out for the first out, but Austin Riley and Matt Olson worked back-to-back walks to load the bases. William Contreras got a tough strike two call, but then bounced a 3-2 pitch to short where Edmundo Sosa stepped on the bag and fired to first for an inning ending double play.
Max Fried struck out Matt Vierling to start the second, but then gave up a double down the left field line to Sosa. Schwarber moved him over to third on a grounder to Arcia who bobbled it, but recovered in time to get Schwarber at first for the second out. Hoskins then lined a 1-1 pitch to Riley to end the inning. So, Fried gave up another hit, but was able to keep the Phillies off the scoreboard.
Travis d’Arnaud got the Braves on the board in the second with a leadoff home run to left against Suarez to make it 2-1.
Suarez recovered however and got Arcia to pop out, Michael Harris to ground out and then struck out Robbie Grossman looking to end the inning.
One more note on d’Arnaud’s home run. Per Sarah Langs, d’Arnaud now has the sixth most home runs by a catcher in postseason history.
most HR as catcher, postseason history:— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) October 11, 2022
Jorge Posada: 11
Jason Varitek: 11
Johnny Bench: 10
Javy Lopez: 10
Yogi Berra: 9
Travis d'Arnaud: 8
Fried’s struggles continued in the third as the Phillies added on. The inning started with Realmuto hitting a dribbler back to Fried, but his throw to first pulled Olson off the bag. Realmuto moved to second as Bryce Harper dropped down a bunt for some unknown reason. Castellanos struck again with a double off the bricks in right, Acuna played it nicely and was able to hold Realmuto at third. Bohm followed with a sacrifice fly to center to make it 3-1. Segura brought home another run with a single to center to extend the lead to 4-1. Fried got Vierling to ground out to Austin Riley at third to bring the inning to a merciful end.
Mean Jean Hitting Machine pic.twitter.com/xhiwrwEyuD— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) October 11, 2022
The Braves threatened again in the third, but were unable to come up with a big hit. Acuna led off the inning with a walk. Suarez came back and struck out Swanson and Riley before Olson lined a single to left to put runners at the corners. Suarez walked Contreras, but then came back and struck out d’Arnaud to leave the bases loaded.
Ranger Suárez's 3Ks in the 3rd. pic.twitter.com/qQ0ZIg5Res— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) October 11, 2022
That is the second bases loaded opportunity for Atlanta in the game that yielded zero runs. Suarez has tied his season high in walks with four and is at 75 pitches after three.
Fried came back out to start the fourth and walked Sosa to begin the inning. He struck out Schwarber for the first out, but Hoskins followed with a double to left to put runners at second and third with one out. That would be it for Fried as Brian Snitker summoned Jesse Chavez from the bullpen.
Chavez struck out Realmuto for the second out and then intentionally walked Harper. However, Castellanos struck again with his third hit of the game, this time a single to left that scored two runs to extend Philadelphia’s lead to 6-1.
Fried’s line was ugly. He allowed eight hits and six runs, although just four were earned. He walked one and struck out two while throwing 61 pitches. His velocity was down across the board and just wasn’t able to miss any bats.
The Phillies whiffed on just six of 32 swings against Fried. Eight of 17 balls put in play against Fried had an exit velocity above 95 mph. Fried's fastball touched 95.6 mph but averaged just 92.7 mph down from 94.0 mph in the regular season.— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) October 11, 2022
Suarez walked the leadoff man again to start the fourth. He got Harris to bounce into a force play and then gave way to Phillies reliever Andrew Bellatti. Grossman grounded to second, but beat the relay throw to prolong the inning. Acuna singled to left, but Bellatti came back and struck out Swanson for the third time in the game.
Jesse Chavez returned to start the fifth and allowed a double to Segura to begin the inning. Vierling bunted him to third and Segura scored on a sacrifice fly by Sosa to make it 7-1. Chavez was then replaced by Dylan Lee who got Schwarber to ground out to end the inning.
Atlanta finally got something going again in the fifth against Connor Brogdon. Olson worked a one-out walk and then advanced to third on a double by Contreras. d’Arnaud followed with a double of his own just inside the bag at third to score both runners to make it 7-3.
Brogdon then walked Arcia and was replaced by Brad Hand who got Harris to line out sharply to Vierling in the right center gap. Hand then struck out pinch-hitter Vaughn Grissom to end the inning. The choice of Grissom over Grossman against a left-hander is questionable unless Grossman was hurt or something. We will find out after the game.
Dylan Lee came back out to start the sixth and began the inning with strikeouts of Hoskins and Realmuto. Harper then doubled off the base of the wall in left center prompting Snitker to go to Collin McHugh who got Castellanos to bounce out on the first pitch to end the inning.
Seranthony Dominguez took over on the mound to pitch for the Phillies in the home half of the sixth. Acuna just missed and flew out to Schwarber down the line in left. Dominguez then struck out Swanson and Riley to end the inning. Swanson has struck out in all four of his plate appearances in the game.
McHugh stayed in for the seventh and retired the side in order. Swanson retired Bohm on a nice barehanded play for the first out. Segura struck out and Vierling lined out sharply to Harris in center.
Dominguez stayed in the game and got Olson to ground out, struck out Contreras and retired d’Arnaud on a fly out to end the frame. Dominguez retired six straight hitters including three via strikeouts. His emergence has really solidified the backend of the Phillies’ bullpen down the stretch.
Jackson Stephens took over on the mound for the Braves in the eighth and retired the side in order. Jose Alvarado replaced Dominguez and after a delay while the grounds crew rebuilt the mound, retired the Braves in order to send the game to the ninth.
Stephens allowed an infield single to Harper, but nothing else in the ninth. The Phillies turned to Zach Eflin to close it out in the ninth. Atlanta wasn’t going to go away quietly as Acuna began the inning by reaching on an infield single. Swanson broke his strikeout string with a rocket over the head of Castellanos to put runners at the corners with no one out. Eflin struck out Riley for the first out, but Matt Olson tagged him for a three-run home run to straight away center to cut the lead to 7-6.
Contreras followed with a sinking liner to right that Castellanos flagged down with a sliding grab.
d’Arnaud then grounded out to Sosa who ranged to his left to end the game.