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Max Fried sharp as Braves beat Twins

Fried allowed just one hit over 6 1/3 innings against Minnesota

Puerto Rico v Atlanta Braves Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

Max Fried looks ready for the regular season as he turned in a dominant performance to help the Atlanta Braves to a 5-0 win over the Minnesota Twins Sunday.

The Braves didn’t waste any time jumping out to an early lead against Kenta Maeda. Ozzie Albies started the game with a deep fly to right field that just went inside the foul pole for a lead off home run. The blast was Albies’ third of the spring and he has hit safely in six consecutive games.

Atlanta added another run in the second. Sam Hilliard walked to lead off the inning and then stole second. After a strikeout by Jordan Luplow and a pop out by Ehire Adrianza, Joshua Fuentes delivered a single to left that scored Hilliard to extend the lead to 2-0.

The Braves scored again in the third as Albies and Braden Shewmake reached on a pair of infield singles. After a strikeout by Sean Murphy, Marcell Ozuna connected on a three-run homer to left to make it 5-0.

Fried continued his stellar spring and made quick work of the Twins retiring the first six hitters he faced over the first two innings. He struck out Joey Gallo to start the third, but then walked Ryan Jeffers to snap the streak. Fried came right back and struck out Nick Gordon and then got Donovan Solano to pop out to end the inning.

Fried added another walk and a strikeout in a scoreless fourth. Kyle Garlick led off the fifth with a single to center for the first hit allowed by Fried. He was erased as Gallo bounced into a 3-6-1 double play. Fried then struck out Jeffers to send the game to the sixth.

Fried needed just eight pitches to retire the side in the sixth. He ended the frame with a strikeout of Carlos Correa on his 64th pitch. Fried returned for the seventh and retired Kyle Farmer on a fly out. Ryan LaMarre then reached on an error by Shewmake which brought Brian Snitker to the mound and ended Fried’s afternoon. Collin McHugh took over and struck out Michael A. Taylor and then got Garlick to ground out to end the inning.

Fried was in control throughout against an uber aggressive Twins lineup. He allowed just one hit over 6 1/3 scoreless innings. He walked two and finished the day with five strikeouts while throwing just 68 pitches.

McHugh retired Gallo to start the eighth, walked Jeffers and then got Gordon to fly out. He would then give way to Michael Tonkin who got Solano to pop out to end the inning. Dylan Lee allowed a two-out single to LaMarre in the ninth, but struck out Garlick to end the inning.

Albies led the way offensively with two hits. Atlanta’s pitching staff allowed just two hits on the afternoon.

The Braves will be back in action on Monday when they host the Tampa Bay Rays at CoolToday Park.

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