The Atlanta Braves will hit the road for their final road trip of the season Thursday where they will begin a four-game series against the Washington Nationals. Atlanta just dropped two of three at home to the Philadelphia Phillies and have lost five of six since clinching another NL East title. They will look to right the ship Thursday with Max Fried on the mound. Washington will go with right-hander Jake Irvin.
Fried last pitched on September 12 against the Phillies and exited after five innings and 87 pitches due to a blister on his index finger. The Braves elected to play it safe with Fried and skipped him during their home series against Philadelphia. He completed a bullpen session earlier this week and declared himself ready to return. Fried has made eight starts since returning from a three month absence due to a forearm strain and has a 2.96 ERA and a 3.15 FIP over 45 2/3 innings.
Irvin will make his 24th start of the season in Thursday’s opener. He has a 4.34 ERA and a 5.29 FIP in 118 1/3 innings. He allowed four runs and struck out six in 4 2/3 innings in his last start against the Brewers. This will be Irvin’s first career appearance against Atlanta.
Ronald Acuña Jr. enters the series on the verge of a milestone. Acuña needs just one more home run to become the fifth player to have 40 homers and 40 stolen bases in the same season. Acuña will be the first to have 40 and 60. He currently leads the majors with 67 stolen bases and is just five away from tying Otis Nixon’s franchise record of 72.
Thursday’s game is scheduled to get underway at 7:05 p,.m. ET and can be seen on Bally Sports Southeast.
Game Date/Time: Thursday, September 21, 7:05 p.m. ET
Location: Nationals Park, Washington, DC
TV: Bally Sports Southeast
Streaming: MLB TV
Radio: 680 AM / 93.7 FM The Fan