Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Dodgers fans were treated to a pitching duel on Saturday evening. Fans weren't expecting to witness a pitching duel between Bryce Elder and Dodgers' prospect Emmet Sheehan.
It would take extra innings to resolve Saturday's contest and luckily for Braves fans, Orlando Arcia's three-run homer lifted the team to a 4-2 win. This win gave Atlanta their 90th of the season as they find themselves 45 games over the .500 mark.
Bryce Elder pitched pretty well on Saturday as he lasted 6 innings and allowed only 1 run on 5 hits with 4 walks and 4 strikeouts. Walks continued to be an issue for Elder but he was able to pitch out of trouble to prevent a big inning.
The sole Dodgers run came in the third inning with the bases loaded and no outs. Elder was able to induce a 6-4-3 double play to get two outs and only allow one run to score. He then was able to get a fly out to end the inning and keep the game tied at 1 apiece.
The Braves' lone run at that point came off an absolutely decimated home run by Ronald Acuna Jr in the top of the third. On a 3-0 count, Sheehan threw a fastball right down Broadway and sent it 454 feet with an exit velocity of 121.2 mph. The ball got out in a hurry folks.
That exit velocity made this home run the third hardest-hit ball tracked by Statcast and the 6th-hardest batted ball overall in MLB history.
After that point, it was a battle of the bullpens and each team's relief cores did their jobs and sent this game into extra innings.
Up until the 10th inning the Braves bullpen combined for 3 innings of work and didn't allow a hit over that time with 2 walks and 4 strikeouts.
Dodgers pitcher Alex Vesia was able to get two quick outs in the top of the 10th and it looked like the Braves wouldn't get anything. Unfortunately for him, things changed after that. Sean Murphy drew a walk to give Atlanta runners on first and second with Orlando Arcia coming to the plate.
Arcia wasted no time as he blasted the first pitch he saw from Vesia into left-center field seats to put the Braves up 4-1. You could feel the breath come out of Dodger Stadium as soon as the ball left the bat. Vesia allowed a single to Michael Harris II after that but got a groundball out on the next batter to end the inning.
Raisel Iglesias checked in for the save and got Freddie Freeman to fly out for the first out. Iglesias then allowed a single to LA catcher Will Smith which advanced Mookie Betts to third. Betts scored on a sac fly off the bat of Max Muncy and pulled the Dodgers closer with their 2nd run of the game.
Iglesias would hold the Dodgers there as he struck out Ahmed Rosario to end the game and bring Atlanta their 90th win of the season and third consecutive win against LA. Atlanta would have been happy with a split of this four-game series but now find themselves winning the series with a shot to sweep the Dodgers at home.
This series has lived up to the hype and it has been entertaining each and every night. I'm sure this afternoon's game will be no different. Charlie Morton pitches for Atlanta and Bobby Miller will oppose him for the Dodgers. First pitch is set for 4:10 PM EST.