The Braves and Marlins played a competitive game throughout, but Atlanta eventually prevailed as Ronald Acuña, Jr. lined a walk-off RBI single to left-center in the ninth inning. The win gives the Braves a three-game sweep against the lowly Marlins, and completes a perfect bookend to a series that began with Acuña being hit on the first pitch he saw on Tuesday and ended with Acuña delivering a 3-2 win.
The scoring began in the second inning as Atlanta jumped out to an early lead, with Adeiny Hechavarria lining an RBI single that scored Josh Donaldson. Hechavarria has been a revelation defensively thus far, and has been a surprisingly adept hitter despite a track record that suggested he may be a liability with the bat.
The 1-0 Atlanta lead would hold up until the seventh inning, as starters Mike Soroka and Sandy Alcantara traded zeroes for the majority of the game. Alcantara was especially impressive for Miami, concluding his night with seven strong innings of one-run (unearned) ball on only three hits with seven strikeouts.
For the Braves, Soroka was incredible in his own right. The right-hander shut down the Marlins offense for six innings before Miami finally plated two runs in the seventh inning. Those came courtesy of a Starlin Castro (who else?) double to center field that put the Marlins ahead 2-1. This would be the final frame for Soroka, who allowed just two runs on five hits with five strikeouts.
In the eighth inning, Freddie Freeman lined a two-seam fastball, low and away, into the first row of seats in left-center field to tie the game at 2-2. Freeman now has 34 home runs on the season, and continues to display incredible power to the opposite field.
After a scoreless top of the ninth from Mark Melancon, the Braves had an opportunity to win in the bottom-half, and got off to a great start as Hechavarria led off with a double down the left field line. A Rafael Ortega strikeout and Tyler Flowers walk brought pinch-hitter Charlie Culberson to the plate, but the usual hero could only manage a fly out to the warning track in right field after a lengthy at-bat. Which set the stage for Ronald Acuña, Jr.
After getting to a 2-2 count that included two nasty splitters from Ryan Stanek, Acuña was able to stay back just long enough on a splitter and line it into left-center field to score Hechavarria and give Atlanta a 3-2 win. Ronnie Baseball continues to own Donnie Baseball and his band of unprofessional pitchers, and rubs it in with a well-timed clutch hit tonight. The Braves earn a sweep, Acuña is still the Marlins’ daddy, and Freddie Freeman continues to rake. Things are looking up for the Braves as they continue their recent hot streak.