Max Fried Stops Braves Losing Streak and Gets Much-Needed Win

ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 13: Max Fried #54 of the Atlanta Braves reacts in the fourth inning of an MLB game against the Miami Marlins at Truist Park on April 13, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 13: Max Fried #54 of the Atlanta Braves reacts in the fourth inning of an MLB game against the Miami Marlins at Truist Park on April 13, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit

The Atlanta Braves looked to get back in the win column on Sunday when they wrapped up a three-game set with the San Francisco Giants.

To say the Atlanta Braves needed a win on Sunday would have been a pretty sizable understatement.

Losers of four games in a row, at a time that coincided with the Philadelphia Phillies winning four straight, the Braves entered play on Sunday with a slim one-game lead over the Phillies in the NL East.

Atlanta would call on their young, budding ace, Max Fried to play the role of stopper on Sunday against the team with the best record in all on Major League Baseball, the San Francisco Giants.

And Fried would be up to the challenge.

Max Fried was nothing short of sensational on Sunday, giving up just three hits and walking one over seven shutout innings while stifling the offense that leads the majors in home runs hit.

Fried turned the game over to brand new father, Luke Jackson, in the eighth.  After giving up a leadoff single Jackson got a double-play ball and ground out to stymie the Giants and send the Braves to the ninth inning with a three-run lead.

And in the rarest of occurrences, Will Smith worked a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth to seal a much-needed victory for the Atlanta Braves.

The Atlanta Braves got back in the win column on Sunday by beating the San Francisco Giants, 3-0.

As good as Max Fried and the bullpen were on Sunday, no pitcher can win a game without some offensive support.

The Braves bats came alive in the seventh when Adam Duvall hit the last pitch of Anthony DeSclafani’s quality start into center field for a two-run home run.

DeSclafani was then replaced by Zack Littell, whose first pitch was roped into right for a solo home run by Eddie Rosario, extending the Braves lead to 3-0.

Rosario also led off the ninth inning with a single.  Normally, this would not be a huge deal, but in this case, it completed the cycle for Rosario, the first Brave to do so in……well about a month, as Freddie Freeman did it against the Marlins on August 18th.

Next week will be crucial in the NL East race.

Depending on the outcome of tonight’s Mets-Phillies game (currently 2-2 in the 5th inning) the Braves will end the day with either a one or two-game lead in the NL divisional race.

The next week will most likely be much tougher for the Braves than it will Philadelphia as the Braves are on the road for four in Arizona and four in San Diego (included in the San Diego series is the rest of the suspended game from July).

The Phillies will have two home series against the Orioles and Pirates.

More than likely the NL East race is going to be won or lost during the three-game set that the Braves and Phillies have in Atlanta on September 28th-30th.

While it may not decide a winner outright, the team that wins that series will most likely be the ones in control of their fate heading into the regular season’s final series.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is crunch time.

Grab your popcorn, your sunflower seeds, your beer, your stress ball, whatever it is you use to calm your nerves during those must-win games.  We are entering that time when games feel like and a lot of times are must-win games.

Next. Is it time to extend Adam Duvall?. dark

The next two weeks are either going to be a lot of fun or exceedingly painful.  These are the games that get the juices flowing for players and fans alike.  The games that bring to mind the words of the great Billy Beane when he said, “How can you not be romantic about baseball”?