For the first time this season, the Braves are officially hot. Behind a solid start from Ian Anderson, and hitting highlights from Austin Riley, rookie Michael Harris, and pretty much every other member of the Braves’ lineup, Atlanta took down the Oakland 13-2 at Truist Park Wednesday night and extended their win streak to a season-best 7 games.
What started out as a briskly-paced, pitching duel turned very quickly into a full on skull-dragging as the Braves offense overwhelmed the rebuilding A’s.
Both starting pitchers, the Braves’ Ian Anderson and the A’s Jared Koenig, came out of the gate looking sharp. Through the first three innings, both guys were posting zeros and making it look relatively easy. Early on, it looked like we were headed for another low-scoring, close game like last night.
In the fourth, though, Anderson finally ran into some trouble as he gave up a double, a wild pitch, a walk, and back-to-back singles to fall behind 2-0. As sharp as Koenig was looking, while making his major league debut, that looked like it might be a big hill to climb.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Braves finally got their bats going with a Dansby Swanson lead-off double. He moved over to third on a Matt Olson fly-out, and came home to score on an Ozzie Albies sac fly. After Anderson threw just seven pitches to complete the top of the fifth, the tidal wave began. The bottom of the fifth started with a walk from Marcell Ozuna, a double from Adam Duvall, and a 2-run triple from rookie Michael Harris, making it a 3-2 score. Austin Riley decided that wasn’t enough and followed it with 2-run HR to make it 5-2 and that’s as close as the game would get.
Ian Anderson pitched his last inning of the night with a scoreless sixth, and finished his night with six innings pitched, two hits, two earned runs, and five strikeouts. After William Contreras added another run in the bottom of the sixth with his eighth home-run of the season, the Braves put the final nails in the coffin in the bottom of the seventh. After Harris led off with a double and Ronald Acuna Jr reached on an error, the Braves went Riley RBI single, Matt Olson RBI single, Albies 3-run HR, Ozuna single, and Duvall 2-run HR. All toll, Atlanta added seven runs in the seventh and put the game to bed.
With the win, the Braves moved to 30-27 on the season, while Oakland fell to 20-38. The Braves look to extend their 7-game winning streak tomorrow night as they start a four-game series at home with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Atlanta will send Max Fried to the hill.