Charlie Morton turned in one of his best starts of the season to help the Atlanta Braves extend their winning streak to eight-straight games with a 5-0 victory over the New York Mets.
Morton got off to a fast start on the mound for the Braves. Brandon Nimmo reached on an infield single, but was erased when Starling Marte bounced back to the Morton who started the 1-4-3 double play. Francisco Lindor then flew out to Ronald Acuña Jr. in right to end the inning.
Morton locked in during the second and struck out Pete Alonso, Daniel Vogelbach and Jeff McNeil all looking.
Charlie Morton, K'ing the Side. pic.twitter.com/QBVp2Tomad— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) August 16, 2022
Taijuan Walker allowed a couple of walks in the first, but escaped the inning unscathed. Travis d’Arnaud led off the second with a single but was erased as William Contreras bounced into a 5-4-3 double play. Vaughn Grissom grounded to Alonso at first who tossed to Walker to end the inning. Walker must have hurt himself while covering the bag or on the mound as he would give way to R.J. Alvarez to start the third. The Mets would later announce that Walker left the game with back spasms.
Alvarez struck out Michael Harris for the first out, but then gave up a solo shot to right by Robbie Grossman to put Atlanta in front 1-0.
Morton retired the side in order in the third and retired 10 straight after Nimmo’s first inning single before Lindor singled with two outs in the fourth. Alonso lined out softly to Riley at third to leave the runner stranded.
The Braves added to their lead in the fourth. Austin Riley worked a leadoff walk and then Matt Olson followed with a monstrous home run that hit the top of the Chop House roof and bounced over for a two-run home run to extend the lead to 3-0.
Morton struck out the side again in the fifth and then added another in a scoreless sixth giving him double digit strikeouts in a game for the fourth time this season. Morton came back out for the seventh and struck out Marte before Lindor reached on another single. He then struck out Alonso to tie a season-high with 12, but then walked Vogelbach to bring the tying run to the plate. Brian Snitker would go to his bullpen and bring on Dylan Lee who struck out Jeff McNeil to escape the jam.
Morton turned in one of his best performances of the season. He allowed three hits and a walk to go along with those 12 strikeouts in 6 2/3 scoreless innings. He threw 97 pitches with 66 going for strikes.
Atlanta added another run in the home half of the seventh. Acuña worked his fourth walk of the game and then scored all the way from first on a single by Dansby Swanson. Brandon Nimmo bobbled the ball in left center allowing Acuña to score with ease.
Swanson moved over to third on a ground out by Riley and then scored on a single to left by Matt Olson to extend the lead to 5-0.
A.J. Minter sat the side down in order in the eighth and Raisel Iglesias closed things out in the ninth. Atlanta improves to 72-46 on the season and cuts the deficit in the NL East to 3.5 games. The series will continue Wednesday with Jake Odorizzi matching up against Max Scherzer.